Germany strode up to Italy's front door, taking the scenery in as he stared around in awe. It wasn't often he was the one visiting Italy, since Italy was generally the one breaking into his house on a regular basis, so it never ceased to amaze him how beautiful the country was. He stared around at the beautiful landscape, and the cloudless sky, and even the small tomato garden in the corner of Italy's yard marked, "Proprietá di Romano. Toccarlo e morire." The only thing out of place was his old BMW parked nearby. Germany sighed slightly as he tucked the bulky white box he was carrying under his arm. He used his other hand to knock softly on the door, pausing to listen for any sign of movement from the other side.

After a moment, the door swung open. "¡Buenas tardes, Alemania!" Spain greeted him, smiling brightly, the way he always did. His eyes fell on the box Germany was carrying and his smile got wider. "Oh! You brought the Medical Kit! Great! I was beginning to run out of Band-Aids!" He took the box and let Germany inside. "¡Muchas gracias!

Germany nodded and walked past him. "Ja, I figured since the Italy Brothers weren't feeling well that I'd—" he froze, blinking in confusion. Then he turned toward Spain. "Wait, I thought you said they just had fevers."

Spain nodded. "Yeah," he answered. "That's usually what happens in a recession."

"…so why did you use Band-Aids…?"

Spain opened his mouth to reply, then paused. Germany could practically see the cogs turning in his head as he struggled to contemplate the question. "…I…um…huh…" Finally he shrugged. "I'll get back to you on that."

Germany couldn't help but sigh in annoyance. "Right…while I'm asking questions I probably don't want answered, why are you wearing that?"

Spain looked down at the apron he was wearing, such a vibrant color of pink it was almost fluorescing. "Oh, this is Belgium's!" He smiled at Germany. Then he remembered that wasn't the question. "Oh, I was wearing this because it was making Romano laugh."

Germany stared blankly at him for a few seconds. Out of all the questions that went through his mind, the one he finally asked was, "He can laugh…?"

Spain chuckled sadly. "Yeah, he was so out-of-it earlier, he just thought it was hilarious…" he trailed off, his face falling ever so slightly. Then he looked back up, the usual cheery smile plastered back on his face. "But Romano is doing much better now! And so is Italy! Although he might still think I'm someone named 'Rosa'…"

Germany rolled his eyes slightly.

Spain nodded, laughing slightly. "Yeah, Veneziano was a little harder hit than Romano, but since Romano is almost back to normal I'm going drinking with France and Prussia later."

"…because that is definitely the responsible thing to do," Germany murmured under his breath.

"Anyway, they're in their room, so why don't we check on them?" He walked down a hallway and turned up a flight of stairs, holding up the Medical Kit Germany had brought him. "And maybe you could explain what all this stuff is!" He laughed a bit, as if he'd just told a hilarious joke.

Germany sighed and followed after the ever-smiling Spaniard. Sometimes he could only guess how people like Spain could stay so cheery all the time. He could never pull something like that off. He'd find a way to get stressed about…well, being happy. Only people like Spain, or Prussia, or America, could be so happy all the time. And Italy of course.

Of course, Italy hadn't been his usual cheery self for the past few days. No "ve"ing, no hugging, no laughing, not even eating pasta. It was nothing serious of course; oftentimes, a Nation would get flulike symptoms when their economy hit a rough patch for a few days. But even so, Germany couldn't stand it when his friend was feeling sick. It almost made him want to hold Italy, find a way to make him feel better, make him go back to smiling.

All of which was a little strange, seeing as Germany wasn't really a 'huggy' person, but weird thoughts like that always seemed to pop into his head when he was around Italy…

"Ah, here we are!" Spain announced, pushing open the door to their bedroom. "I put them in the same bed so I didn't have to run back and forth between them. Clever, no?"

"Uh, sure," Germany answered, walking in and looking over at the two Italians lying in the bed. He was about to ask which one was which, since it was a little hard to see in the semidarkness, when the one on the right sat up.

"Aw man, what's the potato bastard doing here?" Romano complained loudly. Germany had to admit, he did look pretty out-of-it. His brown eyes looked slightly dazed, and his face was flushed slightly, as if he'd just run a mile. And there was a Band-Aid stuck to the side of his face. "I thought you were gonna get me a tomato! He's not a tomato!" At that last sentence, he pointed an accusing finger at Germany, as if he'd been attempting to impersonate a tomato to annoy him.

Spain smiled and walked over, sitting down next to him and giving him a hug. "But your face is already red, so you look just like a tomato!" He said.

Romano scowled slightly, but instead of the usual violence, he just wearily laid his head on Spain's shoulder. "Just get me a tomato next time, bastardo…" he murmured. "And take off the damn apron, 'Rosa'."

Germany couldn't help but grimace slightly at the exchange, watching as Spain continued holding Romano without him muttering a single threat. If Romano was that bad off… He glanced over to the left side of the bed, which hadn't stirred since he'd walked in.

He tentatively crept over. "Italy?" He whispered softly. He bent down next to him, pulling the covers away slightly.

Italy's face was flushed red. His forehead was covered in sweat, with the crooked Band-Aid Spain had put there peeling off. Germany winced slightly and bent down. "Italy?" He whispered again, pressing his hand against his friend's forehead. "Italia, wake up."

Italy's eyes opened halfway. "I-I'm sorry, mister Austria," he stammered weakly. "I-I'll go clean it up in a moment." He started struggling to sit up. "Please don't punish me!" He wailed.

Germany grabbed his shoulder and pushed him back onto the bed. "Italy calm down," he said softly. "Austria isn't here. There's nothing you need to clean."

Italy blinked groggily a few times, then looked up at Germany. "…oh…" he mumbled. He closed his eyes sleepily.

Germany sighed slightly and grabbed the blankets, pulling them back over Italy. "Just rest, Italy," he said softly. "You'll feel better by tomorrow." As he drew his hand away, Italy grabbed his wrist. Germany froze. "I…Italy…?" He asked. He tugged slightly on Italy's hand. "Italy, what are you doing?"

"Don't go…" Italy murmured, his eyes shining with tears.

"But I-I wasn't…going to…" Germany felt any protest dying on his tongue as their eyes met. Gott, Italy really has the most beautiful eyes… Germany flinched and shook his head, feeling his face heating up. He really needed to stop thinking like that. Italy was his closest friend. He shouldn't think things like that about his friend. It was idiotic…it was inappropriate…it was…

Italy mumbled something in Italian and snuggled his face against Germany's arm, which he was still holding, and smiled slightly.

Germany stared at him. He swallowed uncomfortably and sat down on the edge of the bed, feeling his face heating up more. Verdammt, he thought bitterly, why the hell do I keep blushing…? He scratched the back of his neck and tried to look at anything but Italy.

Glancing up, he noticed Romano sending him a death-glare. Spain was still sitting next to him, watching him with a curious look. He gave Germany an encouraging smile. Germany gave a weak smile that he knew looked more like a grimace, and glanced away.

The four of them sat like that for a while. At one point, Germany noticed Italy watching him, a weird look in his eyes. Germany quickly glanced in the opposite direction. Then Italy sat up, still looking at him. Germany sighed and grabbed Italy's shoulder again. "Italy, what are you doing? You need to sleep—"

Italy wrapped his arms tightly around Germany's waist. Germany yelped slightly and stared down at the Italian clinging to him. "Italy, what on earth are you doing?"

"Ti amo…" Italy whispered against Germany's neck.

Germany stiffened. "What the…?" He stared down at Italy, feeling his face practically radiating with heat. "I-Italy?" He racked his brain for the little Italian he knew. Ti amo…ti amo…that…that meant… I…love you…? No, that wasn't…it couldn't…no, Italy had to be hallucinating. Yes. That was the only explanation. He was hallucinating.

Germany gently pried Italy off of him. "Italy calm down," he said calmly. Italy looked up at him. "You're sick. You need to rest. You're tired. Just lay back down and—"

Italy grabbed Germany's shirt and pressed his lips against Germany's.

Germany froze. He could feel everything in his brain short circuiting. Every ounce of reason vanished. Every thought in his mind was smothered out. All he could feel was Italy's lips pressed against his own. He felt himself relaxing against his will. His arms wind around Italy's waist. He pressed his lips harder against Italy's and his eyes shut. And a quick thought passed through his head: Ich liebe dich auch; I love you too.

Italy pulled back slightly, leaving both of them gasping. In the back of his mind, Germany vaguely registered the sound of Romano's shocked cursing as Spain attempted to hold him back, but Germany didn't care. He felt his heart fluttering weightlessly in his chest. He stared at Italy, wide-eyed.

Italy smiled at him and hugged him again. His face was flushed, but he looked barely conscious. Germany hugged him back, feeling lightheaded. He wasn't dreaming. This was really happening. He felt the corners of his mouth pulling upward as he held Italy against his chest. This was real.

Italy smiled up at him, snuggling tightly against his chest. And after a moment, he murmured:

"I will always love you…Holy Roman Empire…"

Then he passed out.

Leaving Germany sitting on his bed, frozen in place.

Well, here's my first relatively serious Hetalia Fic. Hope you all like it.

The sign in the tomato patch said: "Property of Romano. Touch it and die."

It will take a little while before I figure out the rating. Will be subject to change.