Lost. Ch. 37

If you want to live, let live.

If you want to go, let go.

I'm not afraid to dream, to sleep, sleep forever.

I don't need to touch the sky.

I just want to feel that high,

And you refuse to lift me.

Guess it wasn't real after all.

Guess it wasn't real all along.

If I fall and all is lost,

It's where I belong.

If you want to live, let live.

If you want to go, let go.

I'm never gonna be your sweet, sweet surrender.

Guess it wasn't real after all.

Guess it wasn't real all along.

If I fall and all is lost,

No light to lead the way,

Remember that all alone is where I belong.

In a dream,

Will you give your love to me?

Beg my broken heart to beat,

Save my life, change my mind.

If I fall and all is lost.

No light to lead the way.

Remember that all alone is where I belong.

Cloud Nine by Evanescence


As soon as Ludwig realized what Lovino had done, he quickly rose to meet him as his knees crumbled. He wrapped his arms around the Italian and gently lowered him to the ground, settling him on his lap. Ignoring what Feliciano was quietly murmuring to himself, Ludwig tried to make Lovino comfortable and shield him from the rain that pelted down on them.

"Lovino!" Antonio's heartbroken scream split the air. Everyone seemed to stop what they were doing to watch. Antonio abandoned his fight as he sprinted to his lover, tears streaking his face.

A weak groan escaped Lovino's lips. Ludwig couldn't help but realize this could be the second time someone died because of him that night. Ludwig's eyes trailed down his body to see the knife jutting out from his stomach, Ludwig's face rose to look at Lovino's. He did not want to see the knife that was almost in the same spot as his brothers. He did not want to see the knife that would take Lovino's life.

"I-I didn't mean to!" Feliciano whimpered behind them. Ludwig didn't turn around to see him. He could tell from his voice that Feliciano was shocked and heart broken. "Lovi..."

Ludwig ignored him. He looked to Lovino, to the man who openly expressed his hatred for him, who criticized everything he did, who had suffered so much hardship because of Feliciano, and now, the man who sacrificed his life to protect Ludwig.

But with his sacrifice, he just might have saved his brother. Feliciano didn't look like he could hurt anyone else. The one person he hadn't planned to die could be dying.

Ludwig was shocked into silence. What could he say? He silently looked down at the Italian, his blue eyes wide in shock. The Italian looked up at him, for once, not an angered expression on his face. He looked surprisingly at peace. His honey colored eyes met Ludwig's eyes and a small smile tugged at his pale lips.

By this time, Antonio had reached them. Ludwig willingly gave Lovino to Antonio. Antonio wrapped his arms around his lover, rocking him gently and hunching his back to press his forehead to Lovino's.

"No!" he begged, "Please no! Lovino, don't leave! Stay here! Stay here with me, amore." he sobbed, gently stroking Lovino's cheek with his hand. Lovino lifted a hand and gripped Antonio's shirt as if he was trying to root himself to something. He looked to Antonio's eyes, his breathing getting labored. He did not reply, only looked up at Antonio, his eyes saying all that needed to be said.

The sound of feet sprinting through the soaked ground interrupted Ludwig's thoughts. Azure eyes looked up to see Arthur charging towards Feliciano, who was still staring at his brother in shock.

Ludwig quickly jumped to his feet and intercepted Arthur before he could run into Feliciano. The force of his blow caused Arthur and him to fall into the dirty mud. Immediately, Arthur scrambled to get to his feet, as if anticipating for that person to attack him. With all that had happened, Ludwig didn't blame him for being cautious. Sky blue met emerald green eyes. Arthur seemed to relax seeing that it was Ludwig but a confused look replaced his relieved expression.

Ludwig scowled at him, "You will not hurt Feliciano." he hissed at him dangerously. Despite all that Feliciano had done, this was the closest to the old Feliciano that Ludwig had seen. If there was a change that he could get his Feliciano back, he didn't want to risk it. There didn't need to be any more blood spilled. He was tired of death and didn't want to see anyone else die.

"Why are you protecting him?" Arthur snapped. His emerald eyes narrowed with fury. Ludwig couldn't blame him. He had suffered just as Ludwig had, if not more so. He had lost Alfred, Peter had betrayed him and Francis was taken from him. "He killed Alfred! He killed Kiku and Gilbert, and attempted to kill you! Let it go! He needs to pay for what he did!"

Ludwig simply shook his head. Despite what Feliciano had done, he couldn't let any harm come to the youngest Italian. Indeed, he would pay, but not by death. "You will not hurt Feliciano," he repeated, "We're not like that. I'm tired of losing people. I'm tired of people getting hurt. No one else will be hurt, understood?" he snapped firmly.

Arthur glared at him and fell silent for a moment. Ludwig tensed, half expecting him to try something else. After a few moments, he nodded quietly, a sour expression on his face.

"Lovino, please." Antonio said. Ludwig frowned and turned his attention back to the two. He felt a thorn pierce his heart seeing the two; Antonio desperately holding the oldest Italian in his arms, rocking him gently and trying to shield him from the steady rain. Clutching Lovino's hand, Antonio looked down at him, tears coursing down his cheeks, "Stay with me. Please, I need you. I love you so much, Lovino, so much." Ludwig winced at how Antonio's voice cracked. Antonio leaned down to press his lips to the Italian's forehead again.

Glancing up, Ludwig was shocked by the expression on Feliciano's face. A look of pure horror gripped his face. His body visibly trembled from shock. Ludwig was surprised. Lovino had previously been one of the few people who Feliciano still trusted and truly cared about. Feliciano didn't know that Lovino was spying on him. Ludwig had expected him to not be effected by accidentally stabbing him. He was surprised he hadn't purposely tried to kill him. But maybe this meant that Feliciano still cared. Maybe the old Feliciano could still come back...

Feliciano's gazed lowered to look at his hands. His hands trembled fervently and his chocolate eyes had a haunted look to them.

"I'm sorry..." Feliciano whispered, ignoring the tears that coursed down his cheeks. He closed his eyes and shook his head, as if to expel bad thoughts. His body shook like a leaf. Ludwig felt sympathy twinge at his heart. He knew then that the old Feliciano was back. He had nothing left. His allies had betrayed him and he had stabbed his brother, "I'm sorry, I'm so sorry."

A sob broke past Feliciano's lips. He looked lower, his damp hair falling in front of his face. Ludwig quietly approached the Italian. He still wasn't sure how stable he was, even though he knew that his Feliciano was back. He didn't want to make him snap or do anything stupid.

"Feliciano, stop fighting. It's over now. Just surrender and this will all be over. No one needs to get hurt anymore," Ludwig said to him quietly, "You got your revenge."

Feliciano looked up and Ludwig was surprised by the look in his eyes. This was the old Feliciano that Ludwig knew. He looked so pitiful and helpless. Ludwig felt that old desire to protect the other man from harm. However, Ludwig couldn't save him this time. He couldn't take away the things that Feliciano did. Feliciano would have to take his punishment.

Feliciano shook his head quietly, "No," he said, his voice dull and void of life or hope, "It's not over. I...I caused all of this." he whispered. His voice cracked. Ludwig could finally see the light at the end of the tunnel. Feliciano knew what he did was wrong, he was done fighting. Everything was finally going to end and things could start to go back to the way they were before.

The faces of all those who had died passed in front of Ludwig's eyes. Even though this was finally ending, those people could never come back. Ludwig's heart ached to see how many people passed before him. Too many had lost their life.

Ludwig took a step towards Feliciano, wanting to grab a hold of him so they could get out of the rain, so they could get out of this hell.

However, a movement caught his eye. Feliciano's hand drifted to his belt and grasped a handle. Lifting the object upwards, Ludwig saw the outline of a gun as lightning lit up the area. Silently, Feliciano took aim, a dead expression on his face. Ludwig's heart leaped into his throat and his body froze with fear.

"Feliciano, no!" Ludwig cried. He was cut off as a loud bang went through the air, though it was from a different direction. The nations jumped and looked behind them. Behind them stood Elizabetha holding a gun to the air, silence trailed between the nations before one of them spoke.

"Put the gun down, Feliciano. It's over now. There's no need for any more blood to be shed." Elizabetha sternly said. Ludwig glanced back to Feliciano. The younger Italian looked so defeated. His shoulders were slumped in defeat, his hair was slick over his head and his clothes clung to his trembling body, his eyes held a dull look to them, like he had given up on everything. Most of all, Feliciano had his own gun pointed towards his own head.

This could all be over. All the death and suffering could stop. They could all go home and try to live normally. But Feliciano did not want to let it rest. He had started it, and his idea of an end was only worse. Ludwig frowned. Lovino's words repeated in his head. Feliciano had been there for him after World War II. Feliciano had been his friend despite all the horrible things he did during the war. He treated him no differently and loved him the same.

Feliciano may have done horrible things, but he didn't deserve death.

Ludwig looked to Feliciano. The last battle really wasn't over. Except, this battle wasn't between Feliciano and most of the other countries; it was between Feliciano and himself. Not until Feliciano put the gun down would this finally be over. Ludwig looked calmly at the Italian though what he felt was not calm. His insides felt frantic, felt desperate. He tried to look as calm as he could. He had to calm Feliciano down. He didn't want to lose his best friend, "Feliciano, just put the gun down. Don't do this." he said quietly. He reached a hand out to him, pleading at him with his eyes, "Give me the gun, Feliciano."

Ludwig took a hesitant step to Feliciano. The Italian looked at him for a second, his eyes showing the confusion he felt. Ludwig could almost visibly see the wheels in his head turning. He was considering it. Feliciano's eyes glanced to Lovino who was still in Antonio's arms. He was still alive and fighting.

"Feliciano, Lovino's alive. He needs you to help him; he needs his brother." Ludwig whispered softly. "If you give up on yourself, you give up on him too."

Feliciano shook his head, clicking the safety off of the gun. A tear streamed from his eyes, "No," he whispered, his voice dull and lifeless, "He's better off without me; you all are. I did...I did terrible things. I thought terrible things, wanted to do more terrible things. I'm a monster; I don't deserve life."

"Wait!" Arthur exclaimed, stepping closer. Ludwig looked towards him quickly. Was Arthur trying to help him? Ludwig smiled slightly. If Arthur could forgive him, Feliciano might not do it. He might see that others forgave him, "Before you kill yourself, tell me where Francis is! Is he still alive?"

Ludwig was shocked at the Englishman's question. He understood he wanted to get Francis back, but he wasn't helping Feliciano. If anything, he was doing the opposite. He looked to Feliciano who looked to Arthur.

"He's alive. Antonio knows where he is; he will take you to him," he said. He looked at Arthur and frowned, "I'm sorry."

He looked to the group, from Arthur, to Ludwig, to Antonio and Lovino, to Yao and Mei, to Roderick and Elizabetha, "I'm sorry. I'm sorry for what I did, and for what I caused. I hope you can eventually forgive me and remember the good times we had, but I'm sorry for hurting you and your loved ones." he whispered. He glanced to his brother one more time, waiting to make sure he was still breathing. He had passed out; the pain had been too much and he had lost a lot of blood, but he was still breathing.

"Feliciano, no! Don't do this! We can work something out!" Ludwig exclaimed. Feliciano looked to Ludwig, his old best friend, one of the people he had hurt the most, "Ja, what you did was terrible, but we've all done terrible things. We can get past this and move on! There are other ways to punish yourself!"

Feliciano looked at Ludwig, smiling bitterly, "Ludwig, you were my closest friend. I was so blind...so blind. I didn't see. I didn't see anything. But now you don't see." Tears continued to streak down his face in steady streams, mixing with the rain that pelted them, "I can't live with myself. No punishment you could give me would be enough for what I did. Nothing will ever make up for the pain I caused. I just...I just hoped that by doing this, I can give some people the satisfaction they want and get the...the revenge that they want. I'm sorry, I'm so sorry for hurting you all, and I'm sorry for everything I have done. I don't want to trouble you by making you guys take my body. Just leave me here; it's what I deserve. Get attention for Lovi, please, and I hope you can all move on and have a good life."

Feliciano closed his eyes, falling silent. His hand that grasped the gun trembled. Ludwig's eyes widened. "Feliciano!" he cried. For a moment, all the good times they had shared together flashed before his eyes; finding Feliciano in a box during WWI, forming an alliance, training, going for gelato or pizza together, Feliciano making pasta for him after a long day of work, Feliciano somehow always managing to sneak into his bed at night. All these memories and more flooded his head. This was Feliciano, not the monster who killed, not the broken man about to shoot himself. He didn't want to lose him, "No!" he cried.

He raced towards him, heart beating furiously against his rib cage. The world seemed to go into slow motion. He ran towards him slowly, he could see Feliciano's finger curling around the trigger. He screamed Feliciano's name again, just as a loud bang split the air and the bullet left the cartage. A dull grunt escaped Feliciano's lips as his head leaned back. His knees crumpled underneath him and his body began to fall.

Ludwig quickly made it to his side. Time returned to its usual speed. He wrapped his arms around Feliciano as he fell and gently lowered him into his lap.

"Feli!" Ludwig screamed. "Feliciano, don't you dare die!" Blood was quickly running from the hole on the side of his head. His skin was pale and his eyes were lightly closed. Ludwig gently slapped his cheek, "Wake up!" he sobbed.

He heard footsteps racing close to him. Roderick and Elizabetha crouched by his side. He couldn't hear what they were saying; he could only focus on Feliciano. Even with the rain falling on him, the blood continued to flow from the wound in his head in a thick, red stream. He brushed his wet hair from his face, leaning over him and struggling to control himself.

First Kiku, then Gilbert, and now Feliciano. Even though Feliciano had caused it all, he was still his friend deep down and he was still his Feliciano. As Ludwig had hoped, the monster had released its grip from him, but at the same time, Feliciano had released his desire to live.

"Damn it, Feliciano," he whispered, "Why did you have to die?"

He was barely aware that Roderick put his index finger to Feliciano's neck, checking for a pulse. Ludwig knew it was useless. Barely anyone survived from a gunshot wound to the head, especially at such close range. It wasn't impossible, but the chance of someone surviving such a wound was slim to none.

"It's no use," he muttered, his voice tired and defeated, "He's gone. It's over."

"No," Roderick said, his eyes wide in shock, "It's not. He's losing too much blood! We have to hurry and get him and Romano out of here! He has a pulse!"


A/N: Cliff hanger until the next book! Thank you all for hanging with me through this! Please review! I would love to know your opinions of my book and of the plot, or anything else you may want to say. For those reading this on fanfiction, I will be changing my username to my deviantArt name of xXSmokeNMirrorsXx and the story will be called To Be Found. To those reading this on dA, I will be posting this on my 'new' dA, xXSmokeNMirrorsXx. Again, thank you all so much and thank you to my wonderful beta (please visit her link in my profile). Again, please let me know your opinions and what not! Until the next time, friends! ^^