'Sup guys. Here's chapter 2 of Dolore Della Perdita. This chapter's really long and stuff. Oh yeah- sorry if some of it jumps around. I have these marks in Microsoft Word that separate things like breaks in scenes and stuff, but when I upload to fanfiction, half of them disappear. I usually go through and fix it, but sometimes I miss something. So, yeah, if it jumps around, I forgot to put line break somewhere in there.
This story's got a few tiny things that may sound weird or not stick out, but I was trying to get the real feelings of losing someone important, and this is what I ended up with. I'm sure not many of us have lost someone that important to you, though.
Man! This is depressing! Can I write something happy with unicorns and rainbows?
There once was a unicorn named Bob,
Who was depressed at his one girly job-
Through the air he jumped and twirled,
And one day when thought to be a girl,
He just stopped and started a homicidal mob.
WTF THAT DIDN'T MAKE IT ANY BETTER
Forget that limerick completely. I'm gonna go write a fluffy GerIta after this now.
I don't own Hetalia. WARNING: Romano has a dirty mouth.
Romano woke up feeling sore. Sleeping upright wasn't something he usually did. He was drowsy a moment and somewhat disoriented. He felt a moment of panic when he didn't recognize the walls of his bedroom, but as he became more conscious, he realized he was in his living room. As awareness of his surroundings came about, he became aware of what had happened the day before, as well. On his lap sat a pale-skinned Spain, and to his right was his younger brother, still sleep. Not knowing quite what to do, he sat still so as not to wake them. Not long later, he decided it was high time for Spain to wake, though, and- quietly so as not to wake his brother- he nudged Spain's head. Instantly the man hissed and groaned in his sleep. Romano winced. Bad idea.
He instead nudged the man's shoulder, gently prodding his side. "Hey, bastard. Wake up." Spain moved slightly, his jaw clenched. His eyes opened and instantly closed again as he grunted at the light. Romano frowned. "Spain, wake up!" Spain's eyes gently flickered open partway, enough to see Romano above him. At Spain's loose, green-eyed gaze, he felt his cheeks burn quickly. Not long later, however, the man's eyes closed again. Romano began to get a bit worried. He had forgotten Veneciano punched Spain. "Hey, Spain! Are you alright, bastard? You're acting funny!" Spain's eyes shot open, and the man instantly was up on his feet in a second, standing a ways away from Romano.
"Who the hell are you?" He growled. Romano deadpanned. He could feel his brother stir next to him.
"What are you talking about, asshole? Its me, Romano,"
"Where am I?" Spain demanded. "Why am I here?" His tone was cold and low. Romano had never heard him use that tone of voice before.
"You're in my house! And I don't know why the heck you're here, I should be asking you that!" Romano was getting annoyed. Veneciano was wide awake next to him.
"Spain…? Your head… Are you hurt?" He asked. Romano only then noticed the stream of dried blood trailing from Spain's head from the day before. Romano could see the telltale scarlet color spread across the man's temple through his hair.
"Shit, Spain! The glass! We need to clean that!" Romano was cursing himself for not cleaning Spain's wound earlier.
"Answer me, damn it! Who are you?" Spain yelled. Romano silenced. The man's shoulders weren't loose like usual; they were tight and stiff. His fists were clenched and his posture was strict and rigid. His eyes were cold. Instantly Romano noticed his pupils were of completely different size to each other, and his blood ran cold.
"Spain, I think you hit your head badly! We need to get you to a doctor!" Romano stood quickly, only to have Spain back away from him.
"Answer my questions." Spain growled.
"What the hell is wrong with you?" Romano could hear Veneciano crying behind him.
"Spain… Why… Is it because I hit you?"
"Spain, stop acting so stupid, you bastard! This isn't funny anymore-" Spain suddenly lashed forward and grabbed Romano's throat, clenching it tight.
"Where. Am. I?" He asked.
"M-my house in southern Italy, outside of Rome! You come here every day!"
"I don't." He answered immediately.
"I'm Romano! You raised me! You bother me every day! We're best friends! What's the matter with you?" Romano choked. Spain let go, and Romano backed up and fell onto his backside. Spain turned and began to walk out the door. "Wait! Spain! Where are you going? Your head! Please, wait!" But Spain was gone.
Suddenly, all at once, Romano felt all the pain that Veneciano felt the day before. He felt the intense pain of loss, of betrayal, of guilt. He felt an icy chill in his heart that shivered his spine. He had a sense of overwhelming shock that had registered in his chest, but not in his mind. He opened his mouth, but no sound came out. His could feel his heartbeat ringing in his ears. He could feel the sun beating down on his back. He could hear his brother's strangled gasps of hurt behind him. Even with all this, he couldn't register his own shock.
"… Spain…" He spoke almost silently.
"Oh, no, Romano! Spain is hurt and walking around in the country, all because I hit him! Speaking of, Romano, you're also hurt! Your feet are covered in cuts! Please let me fix them up…"
"No, Veneciano! We need to find Spain! They're tiny cuts, they don't matter! We need to go!" Romano stood immediately, ignoring the stings of pain.
"Romano! Stop!" Romano turned to see his brother, his eyes still red from tears, and he felt guilty for yelling at him. "Please… I've lost Germany and Spain… I don't want you hurt as well." Romano didn't answer, but he moved from the door, closer to his brother. "We'll get dressed and go."
Veneciano finished bandaging his brother's cuts- very crudely and amateur, but it was all that either of them could do. They were silent as Veneciano gently handed Romano his jacket.
"None of this would have happened if I hadn't overreacted, brother. I'm sorry." Veneciano said quietly.
"Don't be," Romano answered. "You had every right to act that way. I've been… Well, a bastard towards- um, Germany. I didn't understand how you felt at all. Now I know how it feels to lose someone."
"I know the way you feel towards Spain was the same way I felt towards Germany." Romano's cheeks burned. "That's why we need to do whatever we can to get Spain back to normal. He's hurt… Because of me…"
"Don't blame yourself, Veneciano." Romano said.
"But Romano…" Veneciano said. "You're so quiet. You won't look up to me. You look like you want to cry." Romano looked away when he tried to meet his gaze.
"I'm just… Really sorry at how I acted, brother. I want you to forgive me, but that would be selfish and dumb, and you…" He trailed off as his brother wrapped him in a tight hug.
"You're not one for mushy things, Romano," His brother said with a bright smile obvious in his voice. Romano turned red to the tips of his ears.
"O-only because I don't want to feel all guilty, you bastard!" He sputtered.
"Don't worry Romano, I know what you mean~"
"What…? Stop smiling! It's not like that! Chigi!"
An hour later, the two were standing in front of each other, panting.
"What do we do now, Romano?" Veneciano asked. Romano shook his head.
"I searched everywhere I expected Spain to be." He said. "I don't know where else…"
"But… It's not really Spain anymore. It's someone else. If you were in an unfamiliar place, where would you go?" Veneciano offered.
"A busy place. To ask for help." Romano replied. "Let's go to Rome."
Three hours later, Romano and his brother had gone through the familiar environment, searching everywhere they thought possible. Romano had taken a seat on a nearby bench, running his hands through his hair, tears prickling at his eyes from the frustration.
"Romano…" He heard his brother say.
"Damn it…" Romano said. "What do I do? First freaking Germany, and now Spain… We're just losing them…" He refused to let himself cry, damn it.
"Romano… Don't cry…"
"I'm not crying, damn it!" He yelled. "I just want the two of them back! … Shit…" He grabbed at his hair, handing his hand and gritting his teeth together. "Fucking Spain! Fucking war! I hate this! We've lost him, Veneciano! Both of them! We've lost them because of ourselves! Its already sundown. We'd have to stop for the night. By then, Spain could be anywhere! We've lost! Damn it!" Romano cursed. Veneciano gently tried to tug his hands from his hair before he began tearing it out.
Something just above Romano's vision made his eyes flicker up. A pair of feet standing far from him, evenly spaced and strong. Those familiar shoes. Romano looked up, shocked, to see the one he had been searching for all day, standing merely fifty feet from him. He shot to his feet; Veneciano did the same.
"Spain!" He shouted. The man didn't seem to recognize his own name, but realized the voice was directed his way. He turned his head, and Romano could see his bloody, bruised injury on his head, still unclean. Spain's skin was pale, and even though his stance appeared strong, his eyes seemed out of focus and his arms swung slightly. Oh, god. "Spain, your head- god, we need to get you to the hospital!" Romano ran towards Spain, but instantly the man's eyes snapped into focus and he stepped back from Romano, the frown on his lips set and his eyebrows creased. It was a look that didn't belong on Spain's face.
"Spain, you shouldn't be frowning! Its not you! We need to get you to a doctor!" Veneciano pleaded, expressing Romano's thoughts.
"Don't touch me." He growled. This made Romano freeze in place. Romano's eyes flickered back to his head injury over and over with each movement.
"Spain, you're being ridiculous!" Romano walked closer to Spain, sounding relaxed, but his shoulders were stiff with caution. Spain eyed each movement closely.
"I don't know who you are. Don't act like you know me. For all I know, you're the reason I'm in an unfamiliar environment. If you didn't want to die, you'd keep your ground." Spain said calmly in a deep, unfamiliar tone. This nearly brought tears to Romano's eyes.
"Spain, its me! Romano! I'm the one you crawl into bed with for some ungodly reason, the one you try to kiss and hug all the time! I'm the one that, for some reason, you're always sticking by no matter how much of a- how much of a dick I really am! Our positions shouldn't be switched! You shouldn't be running away from me! You should be here, bothering me, saying I'm cute and you love me or whatever the heck you hassle me with! Don't leave me like this! You're coming back, whether you like it or not!" Romano's bravery was flickering between hot and cold as he spoke. In one moment of pure instinct, he moved forward and took Spain's pale hand. It was freezing. The man flinched, but didn't move away. "Please, Spain. It's me. Try to remember."
Spain was staring nearly past Romano. Romano could tell he was focusing on something that wasn't there. His brow twitched with thought, and his eyes blurred out of focus. After a moment, Romano thought he was going to pass out. "Spain?" He asked tentatively, and suddenly the man snapped right back to normal and snapped his hand from Romano's, knocking Romano back in the process to ungracefully land on his back. "Spain…" In the end, nothing changed. The same cold eyes stared back at him, and Spain turned and left.
"Spain! Spain!" Veneciano called over and over, running towards the retreating figure.
"Veneciano, don't," Romano said. "Just stop." Veneciano gave him a shocked look.
"We're giving up?"
Romano paused before replying. "... I don't think that's an option."
They were soon back at Romano's house, searching on his computer.
"Search the symptoms Spain had,"
"What's it look like I'm doing?" Romano demanded. "Um… It says this is apparent in Traumatic Brain Injury… Something to do with the tem- the… Uh… Temporal Lobe? What's that? Sounds like a fantasy country." Veneciano backed from the computer, deep in thought.
"Temporal lobe… It's the lower area of your brain, around your ear and temple area and down on both sides…" Romano threw Veneciano a curious look. "Traumatic Brain Injury is just as it sounds; an external force directly on or causing damage to the brain. It causes a variety of symptoms: different pupil size, drowsiness, unbalance, comas, and in severe cases, personality changes. Injuring your frontal lobe, for example, tends to cause childishness and immaturity. Injuring your temporal lobe tends to cause… Well, it tends to cause aggressiveness, a cruel personality, a generally always-angry person… In the worst cases, sometimes someone without morals."
"Just like Spain… That's where his injury was." Romano explained.
"Also, the temporal lobe includes your hippocampus, which is in charge of long term memory…" Veneciano trailed off.
"Meaning…" Romano continued. "… Spain's completely forgotten about us." Veneciano lowered his gaze.
"Yes… And possibly, himself…"
They were silent for a long while.
"How do you know all this, Veneciano?" Romano asked. Veneciano hadn't even looked at the informational site they had pulled up.
"I, uh, researched brain injuries once." Romano gave him a puzzled look.
"Why? In case you lost something important when you were dropped as a child?"
"No, I just researched injuries that cause… Er, memory loss." Now Romano was confused.
"I, uh, was interested in how the brain worked." Veneciano lied, keeping his eyes low to the ground, his ears tinted red. They were always the tell-tale sign he was lying. Romano looked at him suspiciously, but didn't think anymore of it.
"Whatever. We need to go find Spain tomorrow."
"But I thought you said… After sundown…"
"Forget what I said!" Romano growled. There was a pause, and the confidence in Romano just drained from him. "Ugh… Who am I kidding? We'll never be able to find him in Italy. We're searching an entire country for one person."
"No, Romano! How hard could it be to find a country with a blood on his head? People have probably already called the police."
"The police wouldn't find him before we did."
"I bet people all over where Spain has traveled have called. The police probably could tell where he's been."
"What does that matter to find where he's going? I was right, Veneciano. After tonight, he could be anywhere." Romano solemnly looked out to the cloudy night. The sun had already long fallen.
Suddenly, Romano felt a sharp pain on his face. He was confused for a long moment, slowly bringing a hand up to his face, before he slowly drew his gaze to a red-faced Veneciano. He was shaking.
"Don't ever talk like that!" He yelled. He had never seen his brother yell until yesterday, and now he was seeing it again today. Everything was messed up. Instead of getting pissed, he only felt himself weaken.
"What should I do, Veneciano?" He spoke unusually softly. Veneciano's shoulders fell. He realized Romano had given up.
"We're not giving up, you idiot!" Now that shocked Romano. "We've lost Germany, we're not going to lose Spain, too! I know how you feel, Romano. But when I lost Germany, I felt angry. I was angry because I couldn't do anything. But you can do something! Spain's not dead. He's wandering around Rome. But if we do nothing, he will be dead. We can't just give up."
"Veneciano, just look at the situation…" Romano said.
"Looking at it, assessing it, researching his condition- that won't find him! We need to go out and look!"
"Now?" Romano said. "In the middle of the night?"
"If we need to."
Romano realized Veneciano was completely serious. He wasn't even suggesting they rest. Romano could find tons of things that were wrong with Veneciano's plan, but he couldn't find the energy to object. He just wanted to go and hide under the covers.
"We're leaving now." Veneciano ordered.
They wandered all over Rome, yet again. They started at where they last saw Spain and tried to follow where they imagined he would go, but they knew that Spain was a different person now. What would we even be able to do once we found him? What if he attacked us? What if he didn't? How would we be able to make his memories come back? What if he's already dead? Questions flew through Romano's mind, he felt like he was going insane. Veneciano kept a clear head, ordering them around, saying where they should go next. He was oddly determined, but Romano could see the fear laced in his gaze, and the pain, and the sadness. Hours after they had searched, Romano left on his own for a bit to let Veneciano rest on a nearby bench. He came back to find Veneciano silently crying. It was a slightly familiar situation. The day before, Romano found Veneciano crying after a great loss, and Romano hadn't a clue what his brother was feeling. Now he knew exactly. He went over to him, put his arm around Veneciano, and let himself cry.
It was a moment of pure luck. In a strong gust of wind, Veneciano had been fixing his coat when it blew off into a nearby alleyway. He cried out in shock and then ran after it, leaving Romano to stray from the main street and follow Veneciano. The wind caused the jacket to tumble into a dark turn off from the alleyway, leading what appeared to be a dead end.
Romano heard Veneciano's quick footsteps come to a sudden halt. He sped up, hoping Veneciano hadn't run into anything. He turned the corner.
"Veneciano, what's-" He stopped to see the situation in front of him. A tall, skinny, but strong man was at the end of the alleyway, his fists up and his knees bent. Blood was trailing down his mouth, and he stood oddly on one leg. Across from him, his adversary was Spain. Spain stood tall, his arms loosely at his sides. His eyes were clearly set on his enemy.
"What the hell you pickin' fights with me, man?" The man said. "You ain't got nothin' on me." Romano could see the pale-skinned, dark-haired man, talking big but staying a clear, safe distance from Spain.
Spain didn't reply. He merely feinted left, and when the man flinched, he came right and shot a fist into the man's cheek. He grunted, stumbling back, but not falling.
"Weak!" He spat. "You rich people think you're so strong. Well you ain't." Wait, that didn't even make any sense. How were rich people stron-
Spain interrupted Romano's thoughts by swinging his leg into the man's face, then doubling with a fist into the man's abdomen and, when the man buckled, a knee into his face. The man fell back, groaning. Romano jumped in.
"Spain, stop!" He yelled. "He's a human! What are you doing? You'll kill him!" Romano shouted. He could hear the man behind him get up.
"The hell are you?" He demanded.
"Get out of my way." Spain said in that feral tone.
"I don't even know why you fightin' me, man!" The man behind Romano shouted. "B-but you ain't nothin'!" Romano could hear the fear practically melting off of the man's words. Romano resisted the urge to roll his eyes and turned around to give the man a glare.
"Spain, this is terrible. You're picking fights! This isn't like you! Just stop with your fighting and we can go…"
"Yeah, go with your sissy friend. Just leave before I kick your ass." The man said, coming towards Spain. Spain clenched a fist and prepared to punch the man again before Romano grabbed his arm.
"Stop! Just stop it!" He shouted. Spain immediately ripped his arm out of Romano's grasp and shoved him to the side. Romano skidded backwards and tripped over something behind him. He tumbled backwards, rolling, before he landed roughly on his back. He groaned, feeling something poking into his back. A piece of a broken bottle, perhaps. He looked up and was shocked to see Spain's eyes, wide and staring at Romano. It was then he realized how much all three of their roles really had switched; Romano, Veneciano, and Spain. But in that moment where Spain's eyes hesitantly flicked from his adversary to Romano, as though considering fighting, like his mind was telling him to, or to go to Romano, like his body was telling him to, as though he was fighting his instincts. In that moment of uncertainty, however, the man had run forward and landed a heavy, powerful punch onto Spain's temple. Romano watched in horror as Spain's eyes shot open. The man grabbed Spain's head roughly and then brought it down, slamming his knees into it. A sickening crack resounded through the air. Spain fell back and hit the ground with a deep thud.
Romano was aware of Veneciano yelling Spain's name slowly. Or, maybe Romano was just seeing things slower than they should be. A line of blood trailed after Spain as he hit the ground. Blood was pooling all over the ground. Spain was unnervingly still. The man panicked, not knowing what had happened, and just turned and started running past Veneciano. As he came past Romano, everything zipped back to reality- and Romano's hand shot out and clenched around the man's leg, causing him to soar forward before landing on the ground. Romano could hear him shouting excuses, not knowing that his attack would kill Spain, as he hadn't even hit him that hard. But Romano merely grabbed his ankle harder until he heard a faint crack. The man cried out, but desperately tried to stand as Romano let go. As soon as he did, Romano punched the man in the face. The kicked the man, grabbed his hair, threw him in the wall, threw him on the ground, kicked his ribs, broke his nose, snapped his bones, everything he could. The man was long unconscious and Romano knew if he continued he would kill the man, but he was blind and deaf to all the cracks of the man's frail body and the red painting the ground.
"Romano!" A desperate cry brought him out of his antics, and he stopped everything. The man was still breathing. Romano backed off as though he had been stung, fear causing him to take short, quick breaths. He felt the need to vomit. He hadn't been himself. He nearly killed someone. He crawled away from the man on his back. "Romano…" The voice came, softer this time. Romano turned around to see Veneciano staring back at him, his eyes wide. He blinked, but didn't move towards his younger brother. Instead, Romano crawled towards Spain's limp body on his hands and knees and pretended to cry.