The distance from a plush couch onto a hard wood floor made itself known through a quick face stinging plummet. More adrenaline flooded his system, but it did not urge him to fight as it normally did. No, for the first time in his life Gilbert Beilschmidt, personification of Prussia, which at the time no longer existed, and East Germany, which had recently reunified with its western counterpart, wanted to run.
Rolling onto his back, the albino spread his arms wide like an eagle. His scarlets cast an empty stare toward the ceiling. Cool air soon set into his bones, telling him that the fire he had started must have burned out. If the owner of the house knew he had left the flames unattended, Gilbert was sure he would be chewed out. At the moment though, said person would have had to compete with his beating heart and the television, which had already been made white noise in comparison to the drum pounding in his chest. He had lit the fire and turned on the television before lying down. He had been trying to stay awake the whole night, but it was clear that he had failed.
Gilbert closed his eyes, allowing the images from his dreams a chance to resurface. They weren't so much dreams though as they were more so memories dug up from some of the worst times for him as both a person and a country. He clenched his eyes shut, trying to burn them away before he sat up.
While under Russian care, he had plenty of time to think about his country's rise and fall. At the same time, he had to deal with the suffering of his people. New physical and mental scars were added before the Berlin wall metaphorically crumbled. Gilbert had convinced himself during that time that everything he once was would haunt him until he would fade like those who had come before him. Maybe that lead to the tossing and turning he had been recently experiencing.
Soft twinkling notes from a grand piano broke through his thoughts. Gilbert drew his brows together. It had to be late and he made sure that Roderich, personification of Austria, had been sleeping before he snuck in. He had been doing that every night, yet somehow, in the morning, he usually found a blanket on the floor that had likely been place on him during the night.
Using the couch to prop himself up, Gilbert rose to his full height before padding through the house. His boots thundered against the flooring as he walked leisurely toward the music room. Listening closely to the melody, he swore that he was hearing his own anthem, the Prussian national anthem that told of a white and black nation lead by Friedrich the Great.
Thinking of the lyrics, the albino froze. Images flashed through his head, pulling him back into the time of his dreams.
The older man lay on his desk, arms a pillow for his head. Papers were scattered all over it and his inkwell had been knocked to the floor.
"Oi! Fritz!" Prussia greeted his ruler as he strolled in without even bothering to knock. He smiled fondly when he realized the man was asleep. Giving his shoulder a gentle shake, Gilbert called his name again. No answer.
Fritz always answered after the second call. He was a light sleeper after all. Not only was he not answering, but deathly pale. Gilbert set a fearful hand to his neck to find that it radiated cold. Rubies widened and he shook him again. "Fritz!" he called desperately.
Eventually, Gilbert had effortlessly taken the man from his chair to lay him down on the ground. He held his ruler's upper torso close to his chest as he rocked back and forth. A mixture of feeble cried, prayers, and sobs escaped the strong nation as he clung to his beloved ruler. If he had ever believed in anyone or anything, it had been that man. Fritz had done nothing short of raising Prussia, nation and man.
"You can't leave me. Fritz, they need you," Gilbert choked. He clenched his eyes shut, whole body shaking with the effort. "I need you…"
Biting at his lip, Gilbert shook his head, trying to chase the thoughts away. There had been nothing he could do and at least Friedrich had gone peacefully. He made sure to pay a tribute to him every year on his birthday in the hopes that somewhere, somehow, Fritz was smiling down at him. It had been hard though when he had been without his flute, the instrument that Fritz had taught him how to play.
Again, the sweet sounds of the piano consumed his thoughts. Fritz had played some now that Gilbert thought about it. He composed too. In fact, the Prussian anthem had transitioned into one of his songs.
His nightmares were explainable, but Roderich playing anything Prussian related was not. The musician swore he never would, likely because the two of them were almost always on opposing ends of each others' swords.
Venturing further through the enormous house that Austria hid in, he listened in, hoping that Roderich may start talking and give a reason for this strange phenomenon. While Roderich rarely did talk when he played, there were no doubts in the Prussian's mind that he did hold chats with himself every now and then.
By the time he made it to the doorway, the piano sang the regal tune of Germany, Deutschlandlied. Although, if he remembered correctly, the song had been written for an Austrian Emperor's birthday. Leaning against the doorway, Gilbert closed his eyes. Long and slender fingers tickled the ancient ivories. Their melody enveloped him like the comforting arms of a lover.
"I guess this is goodbye, huh, West?" Gilbert asked his younger, yet taller, brother. The albino nation forced his usual cocky grin onto his face. He wanted to seem like the strong one. He would always see Ludwig as the young boy he had raised, the same boy he read to at night and hugged when he cried. Even after all of this, he would have liked to have done a better job of protecting Ludwig from the nefarious dictator that had ruled his land through the war and he wished he could spare him the aftermath.
"Ja…" Ludwig agreed. His azure eyes refused to meet his brother's. He saw their parting as his own fault.
Grinning still, Gilbert patted him on the shoulder. "Don't worry, kiddo; awesome will make it back for you..."
The stoic German faltered, running a tongue over his cracked lips to wet them as he stared down at his steel toed boots. Gilbert had told him that every time he had left when Ludwig was young and Ludwig had always believed him. However, he knew that not even Gilbert knew if those words were true this time around.
Staring up into those confident scarlets, Ludwig managed to smile lightly, worries starting to put themselves to rest. His brother was too stubborn to let himself be beaten. He extended a hand to Gilbert to shake. "Auf Wiedersehen."
"Didn't I teach you better?" Gilbert asked. He caught Ludwig in an embrace then. At that moment, his resolve started to crumble. He willed himself not to shed a tear. "You take care of yourself, got it? And… let Ita-chan come over every once and awhile, ja?" He was the only one who needed to be alone during this, even if it could very well kill him on the inside.
Patting Gilbert awkwardly on the back, Ludwig nodded. "Ja, I will."
The house echoed the last bit of the tune as the musician drew his hands away from the piano to let them fall into his lap. Having returned to reality, Gilbert was left to stare at the back of the brunette's head. Staring below the ebony piano stool, he could see his bare feet. Roderich had gone to sleep, that much was proved by the white pajamas with vertical light blue stripes that he wore.
"I imagine that you couldn't sleep with all the noise," Roderich mumbled.
"You knew I was awake, Little Master," Gilbert corrected.
Roderich shook his head, still not turning around to face Gilbert. "No."
Gilbert strode toward him. "You knew I'd be here and you knew I was awake. Why else would you play my awesome anthem?"
Sighing, Roderich signaled his defeat. "I heard you hit the floor," he explained.
A hand slipped to the keys of the keyboard. The piano cried out on a sour chord. Gilbert leaned in close to the glasses-less face of the aristocrat. His violets were painted with worry. "Roddy…" the albino started.
"I know about the nightmares," Roderich whispered softly. Recoiling as if Roderich had revealed some dark secret, Gilbert stepped back in one swift motion, hand coming back with him. "What else could it be with all the tossing and turning you've been doing?"
"Why didn't you kick me out?" Gilbert asked, wishing it had been that easy. Most of the time, it was what Roderich tried to do in the first place. "And you still haven't told me why you played my anthem."
"Sit," Roderich ordered. He shifted down the stool to let Gilbert sit next to him. None too gracefully, the Prussian plopped down where he was meant to, waiting for his answer all the while.
"Was?" Gilbert finally asked, exasperated.
"I can't help you if you won't tell me what's wrong," the musician whispered.
The albino snorted. "Helfen Sie mir?"
"Why else would you come to my house, Gilbert? You could easily bottle everything up in Ludwig's basement, but you came here," Roderich reasoned.
"What is there to talk about? You wouldn't get it." He clenched his fists, letting his knuckles turn white.
"Gilbert Beilschmidt, I have been behind you all this time! Every time you fought, I was there, even if that meant I was against you. There isn't a thing you can tell me that I wouldn't "get". I can't copy your feelings, but I could at least try to understand them if you would just let me," the Austrian snapped.
His mouth opened and closed several times before he stared at his hands. He let them relax. Roderich did have a point; he had been there during nearly all the major moments in Prussian history.
"Little Master, do you know why I always come back here? To your house?" Gilbert questioned suddenly. Roderich shook his head, not really sure how the nightmares and his always coming to his house were relevant. "Because even after everything, you're still here… You haven't changed and you've always been there…"
The musician smiled to himself. "I always wondered," he mused. "And after awhile, I anticipated your visits. I've seen so many people come and go through this house, but you always came back. After our broken alliance… after the wall… It was almost comforting actually…"
Gilbert grinned. "I'm not going anywhere, Little Master," he whispered as he hooked an arm around him. He pressed a sweet kiss to a blushing Roderich's temple. "Sleep with me?"
"Nein, Gilbert, du-" Roderich started before his words were stolen by another kiss, this one pressed to his lips, of course.
"Next to me, Roddy. Next," Gilbert stressed with a snicker. He wanted someone real next to him, someone who wouldn't leave like the ones from his nightmares. "I always knew you had your head in the gutter."
"It is not!" Roderich protested with a huff. "And fine."
They let silence cover them like a blanket, neither one of them really willing to move yet. Roderich let his eyes fluttered closed. Gilbert smirked. "Am I going to have to carry you to your room?"
Immediately, the Austrian shot up. "No! I can walk fine on my own, thank you," he growled. Without another word, he stood up and he started to head for his room.
Gilbert trailed after him, snickering when Roderich nearly went the wrong way. He called ahead the correct direction and hurriedly, the brunette followed it. Doubling his pace to catch up with him, Gilbert made his way into the room first before flopping onto the bed.
"You're going to ruin the springs," Roderich scolded.
"Kesesesese~ So?" Gilbert asked. He wrapped both arms around Roderich before tugging him down onto the bed with him. The aristocrat squirmed, sure to voice his protests known. Gilbert took it upon himself to smoother them again with his own lips. He pulled back before letting Roderich make himself comfortable. Once the Austrian was settled, the Prussian wrapped his arms around him, pulling him close as if he were an oversized teddy bear. "Guten nacht."
"Guten nacht, Gilbert," Roderich mumbled as he relaxed against him.
The personification of Prussia stayed awake for some time, watching Roderich fall asleep before sleep even threatened to take him over again. "Danke, Roderich," he whispered in his ear. "Ich liebe dich…"
Auf Wiedersehen - Goodbye (formal)
Was? - What?
Helfen Sie mir? - Help me? (Literally, Help you me?)
Nein, Gilbert, du- - No, Gilbert, you-
Guten nacht - Good night
Danke - Thank you
Ich liebe dich - I love you
I wrote this fic as a gift to my Prussia. (Ich liebe dich!) I told him to request whatever he wanted. He wanted to see Prussia having nightmares about his past and Austria then comforting our favorite Prussian.
Now for my usual less important ramblings. First I would like to say that I'm not sure accurate my scene with Fritz is. I think I read somewhere that he died at his desk so that has background, everything else is the spawning of my own head. Also, the song that Austria plays is not the common Der Hohenfriedburg that I stuck in a previous fic. While Austria will play what he must to get Gilbert's attention, he will never play that song. The information on Deutschlandlied is accurate as far as I know. It was a song written for an Austrian Emperor who was also the emperor of the HRE. It is now Germany's national anthem. The wall reference is clear, but their broken alliance, I'm not sure if that is. Austria and Prussia did have an alliance, but Prussian/German leader Otto von Bismark turned around and immediately started a war with Austria after he had gotten what he wanted.
Okay, done with my historical rants. I hope that you enjoyed reading.