Author Notes: This fic was my first Hetalia fic ever, and it was wirtten as a gift to a friend. Her prompts were Turkey/Greece - devshirme, with a bonus if Greece's huge cross-thing was included. I wrote, delivered (originally I was only going to draw a pic, but somehow, it prompted the fic, haha) and apologized profusely for any mind-scarring and eye-raping my fic and pic may have caused. Thankfully, she liked my efforts (perhaps more than I did), and hopefully you do too! Thanks, and happy reading!

Devshirme/Devşirme - "The practice by which the Ottoman Empire conscripted boys from Christian families, who were taken from their families and by force converted to Islam, trained and enrolled in one of the four imperial institutions: the Palace, the Scribes, the Religious and the Military." (Wikipedia)

Disclaimer: Hetalia and its characters are totally not mine. No profit is being made from this in any way (ah, pity, my bank account could use a bit of a boost for the holidays), although I suppose some entertainment has been derived out of it. I respond well to positive comments and con-crit, and ignore flames and trolling. The ideas and beliefs that may appear in this series in no way reflects my personal ideals and beliefs. Dude, it's just fanfic, okay? Chill.

~ The Gathering ~

The metal against his back is cold, unyielding, like the bonds around his wrists that anchor him to his symbol of faith. That tall crucifix that has become his trademark is no more a simple cross than he is a simple person. Heracles Karpusi is not a man, and Mount Athos is not a cross.

He kneels, his knees dirtied and bruised from the rocky soil. If he could stand, he could escape, for his hands, while bound, are not bound to the cross embedded deep into the ground. But he cannot stand. And he will not. Because to do the cowardly thing and escape like that would mean leaving behind his cross.

It had been his pride, his glory. Now it will be his burden to bear.

Heavy hands, large and rough and callused, press down on his shoulders. And now it is not so much that he refuses to stand, but is unable to. Not with that weight, that strength bearing down upon him.

"What? Not putting up a fight?"

What can he say? What is there left to say? His choices were the Venetians, or the Turks. What kind of choice is that?

So he says nothing, turquoise eyes sparking with all the helpless frustration and anger he cannot voice. His jaw remains clenched, lips pressed in a thin, stubborn line.

A low chuckle by his ear makes him turn, but there is little give in his bonds, and he can barely make out a flash of tanned skin and dark hair. He is torn between the humiliation of not being able to properly face his captor, and the relief of not having to acknowledge his conqueror. Both leave a bitter taste in his mouth.

Fingers, roughened by centuries of battle, trail over his skin. He shivers, and twists away from the touch as much as he is able. But they are relentless, and have the degrees of freedom he does not, not to mention the strength. They touch his nipples, teasing touches and pinches that, while not entirely gentle, are not as rough as they could have been. They tug, firmly, enough to remind him that there is steel behind the façade of leniency.

He feels heat prickle up behind his eyes and he shuts them, but refuses to give in to tears. By all standards, he is young, his past greatness but a memory of an almost forgotten time. He keeps his back stiff with dignity, with defiance, with pride that no longer suits him. He keeps his back stiff and pressed to his cross, feeling the metallic chill seep into him.

"See your people. Watch as they become mine." That voice is low, insidious, deceptive. "One by one, one in five, gathered into my fold." The warm press of lips against his ear is a contrast to the frozen words they whisper. "One day, they will all belong to me."

The wandering fingers slip lower, and he is forced to bite his lip to keep back the cry of denial. His muscles ache from the effort of holding back the trembling.

"I'll start small; one son in every five. We'll see where to go from there. I'll start…with you."

They tease a trail down his belly, stroking the quivering flesh there as they continue on down, seeking, until they reach. There.

He is unable to silence the startled whimper that makes it past his lips, and involuntary jerk of his hips. His aqua eyes fly open in surprise. Shock that coercion can feel…good.

"It's not so bad," the hot voice purrs into his ear. "I'll not force you to give up everything. You may keep your beliefs…for a price." Those strong, fingers, capable of crushing out life, close gently around his cock, and begin to move, torturously slowly.

"All I ask, really, is to be paid. My taxes and my tributes. That is all." He feels the scrape of teeth against his jaw, the rasp of stubble against smooth skin that has yet to grow a man's hair. "I am easy to please."

The pleasure builds up in waves, breaking against his weak resistance, washing over him, washing away the desire to struggle. Cresting, and then ebbing, to leave behind only shame. It is so easy to give in, and most damning, he wants to. He tells himself that it will only be a front, so that in his heart, where it counts, he may be true to himself. He comforts himself with that, but knows better. Finally defeated, his stiff shoulders slump, and his sigh is a sob.

Against his will, he feels the dampness in his eyes spill.

His eyes are not the only part of him that weeps with shame, as he acquiesces to the Turk's demands. The hand around his most vital of regions is slick with his own issue of shamed lust. That hot, wet grip tightens and, accepting his surrender, begins to jerk him off in earnest.

Even as his body soars with the forbidden pleasure and his body overrides his mind, thrusting into that strong, rough hand, he promises himself that however much he is made to bend, he will not break. And he will lie in wait for the day where Turkey's strength wanes and he will be free to act. For now, though, he does not belong to himself.

His pleasure explodes forth, and the cry that it wrenches from him is both a curse and a benediction. "Sadiq!" A plea.

The soft, mocking laugh brings him back to the crushing reality that is here, and now.

"There now, that wasn't so difficult, was it."