"How is it?" Alfred asked anxiously, standing up almost immediately when Arthur walked out of the checkup room.
"Fine." Arthur replied calmly. The latter wasn't convinced nor relieved.
"Fine? You fainted back there. While driving a car!" Alfred stated, furrowing his eyebrows. "That doesn't feel fine to me at all!"
Arthur sighed. "I'm just tired and dozed off. You think too much."
Alfred tightened his fists; Arthur always been a bad liar, but it felt like he wasn't even trying this time. The chances of Alfred believing that Arthur fell asleep in the middle of a heavy traffic was close to none.
He looked at Arthur, who avoided eye contact. The Brit had bandages wrapped around his head, where the crash wound was. Luckily, the head wound was the only serious one among the scattered cuts and bruises. That, and the fact that he looked more than a little shaken and pale to be healthy. But if Arthur wasn't going to tell him anything, then there's no use trying to know about it.
"You could have died." He reached out to hold Arthur's hand in his. His heart pinched at how cold it felt.
"I'm fine Alfred." Looking up to meet the eye contact, Arthur forced a smile. "Just… Get me home and let me rest, alright? A car crash is enough for one day."
Alfred nodded blindly, taking his jacket off and wrapping it around Arthur as he led the latter out of the hospital.
"Alright, let's get you something warm to drink first."
"He isn't fine at all." The doctor rested the files on the desk with a long sigh. "Didn't he tell you?"
Alfred sat in front of the desk, shaking his head.
"He said he was fine."
The Doctor's office was colder than any office he had been, and he instinctively didn't like it. Then again, he never did like anything in the hospital; from the suffocating antiseptic scented air to the dead silence. It's a place full of pain and death, definitely not a place he would like Arthur to be in.
The doctor pushed his glasses up in slight annoyance. "I see." He sighed and proceeded to turn the projector on, getting Alfred to look as an image of an x ray appeared. Alfred knew what this meant, and boy how he wished he knew wrong.
"This is an x ray of the patient's skull." The doctor explained as he pointed to a particular black patch on the image. "And this, is a brain tumor." He announced, the grave tone immediately killing the bit of hope in Alfred.
"We found this only after that car accident, and unfortunately, it's already too late." Seeing Alfred's almost devastated expression, the doctor softened his tone as he switched the projector off. The more the relative stare at it, the harder the truth gets. "I'm afraid that there's nothing I can do."
Alfred was hearing the words loud and clear, but he was unable to process any of it. The image of that x ray was burned into his memory, and already it was numbing his senses with pain. This was nowhere near fine.
"H-how long does he have left?"
When Alfred was allowed into the ward, Arthur was half sitting on the bed, flipping through the magazines the hospitals had provided for the patients.
"These would have been more interesting if I wasn't the one who edited them." laughing bitterly, Arthur closed the magazine and waved it at Alfred a little.
Alfred managed a bitter smile of his own as he sat on the chair beside Arthur's bed. "I'll get you a book tomorrow." He volunteered as he grabbed an apple from the bedside table and started peeling it for Arthur.
"Or," Arthur leaned back on his pillow with a sigh. "You can get me out of here."
Alfred abruptly stopped the peeling and turned sharply to look at Arthur in disbelief. The latter ignore the eye contact and stared at the ward's plain boring ceiling.
"I hate this place, don't you hate it too?"
"You've talked to the doctor haven't you?" Arthur finally turned to face Alfred, the other took his turn avoiding the pair of green eyes.
Arthur sighed. He reached out slowly to cup the latter's cheek, slowly bringing Alfred's eyes to meet his. Then, in an attempt to break things in the most gentle way possible, he whispered.
"Please. I don't want to die here."
"I'm sorry." Taking the stethoscope off to hang it on his neck, the doctor shook his head in near regret. "He's gone."
"It- it's not even a week yet." Alfred sat on the bed, Arthur lying motionless beside him. He tightened his grasp on Arthur's ice cold hand in a desperate attempt to share his warmth with his love; Arthur hated being cold. "You said he had a month." His voice was trembling, and keeping his tears behind his eyes was getting more difficult by the moment.
"I'm a doctor." The doctor gave Alfred a sympathetic pat on the shoulder. "When i am right, no one listens. When I am wrong, people never forget. He should have stayed in the hospital."
"… He didn't want to be in there, he wanted to spend his last days at home." Alfred muttered, regretting his decision of bringing Arthur home.
The doctor took a glance of Alfred and Arthur's expression before he sighed yet again; it seemed rather normal for him to sigh nowadays. Despite being doctor, there were many things he couldn't do and change.
"Then take it that he died a happy death." He turned to pack his case. "He was with you throughout his last days, and I have a haunch that it meant a lot to him." Picking his case up, he turned to leave the room.
"Don't take it too hard on yourself. No matter how things go, it would end the same way, there's nothing any of us could do." With that, he left, leaving the two alone to their last moment.
The moment didn't last as long as Alfred thought it would.
Alfred took a deep breath and exhaled as he reached the top of the fleet of stairs. He pushed the door in front of him open, walking out to the roof of the high building. The strong and chilly wind here was almost instantly numbing him with cold.
He shivered a little.
Walking to the edge of the roof, he climbed over the safety railing and stared down at the city below him. Then, before his brain could convince him not to, before fear was able to kick in, he took a step forward.
The doctor was right, there was nothing they could do. But there was something he could do; something he would not hesitate to. He'll leave this world to where Arthur was, find him, and continue to love him.
Death ends a life, not a relationship.
Wait for me, Arthur.
A/n: Quote "Death ends a life, not a relationship" by author Mitch Album, go read his books, they are real good.