Disclaimer: I do not own Hetalia.
Warning: Swearing ahoy.
"Geez, Franny-Pants, it took you long enough!" Gilbert huffed, annoyed. His hot chocolate was cold and the mini marshmallows were almost completely gone in the thick drink. He and Antonio had been waiting for the last member of the Bad Touch Trio to show up in their usual place; a cozy small restaurant by called Stella's. It was a little less than ten minutes away from their dorm building.
"I apologize," murmured Francis, not at all eager for their meeting. Ever since lunch, he had been frantically thinking of options to possibly persuade his friend to change his mind and forget his ridiculous ideas for revenge. However, Gilbert Beilschmidt was not one to be persuaded very easily (when it was his pride at stake at least), and Francis knew better than anyone. He slid into the faded red booth next to Antonio. "I was… busy."
"What, Eyebrows bitching about some unawesome thing again?" Gilbert asked with a smirk. He enjoyed teasing his friends about their love lives – especially Francis and Arthur's as he was close to both of them. Man, he used to be so fun… Now he's just a prissy student council president. It wasn't completely true; Arthur still let loose. Occasionally.
Francis wasn't entirely sure he wanted to inform Gilbert of his current living arrangements. As much as he could, he'd try to protect his cousins. He hoped Gilbert wouldn't go too far. "You could say that."
"What's wrong, Francis? You do not look so good! Smile, amigo!" Antonio encouraged, a concerned look on his face. He didn't like seeing his friends unhappy and upset.
"Yeah, Franny, seriously! It's like Eyebrows is rubbing off on you!"
"Sorry. I was just thinking of how much work I have tonight," he smiled tiredly. It wasn't entirely a lie.
"Alright, let's make this quick then! First of all," Gilbert took a large swig of his drink. "We need to find out more about him. Likes, dislikes, strengths, weaknesses, everything."
Quoi? "…Gil, is that not going a bit too far?" He had thought Gilbert was going to pull a stupid prank and be over it. Not stalk Matthew to learn everything about him.
"Nope. He humiliated me – I mean us in front of the whole school, Franny. This is going to be big." Was Francis going to back out of it? Gilbert scoffed at the thought. No way. He's more awesome than that.
"But it was not him who threw the pizza at you, no?" Antonio asked. "Would it not be better to search for that person?"
Gilbert waved off the suggestion. "Too much work. Besides, this kid needs to learn not to sit at the Bad Touch Trio's table."
Francis had been friends with Gilbert for a long time now – they had met each other in freshman year, and instantly started a friendship over not liking Roderich Edelstein (who was Gilbert's cousin). Antonio joined in when they were sophomores and a sort of war started. Elizaveta Héderváry, who Gilbert had dated for a short time and quickly broke up with, sided with the Austrian who had been in fact her new boyfriend. It was actually a rather complicated love/hate triangle with many of them holding grudges against each other. Antonio had been together with Roderich for a while in freshman year. He wasn't the type to hold grudges and was mainly just going along with his new friends. And ever since Arthur Kirkland came to the school, Francis and he had a sort of love-hate relationship. Arthur, of course, sided with Roderich and Elizaveta purely because he despised the French teen at the time (he still does).
"Oh, forgive me," said Francis, snapping out his reminiscing of the past. He still didn't understand how Gilbert worked – willing to obsess over finding everything out about his cousin but not to find the one who hit him, which would actually be much easier if Gilbert would just ask around a little bit. "Gilbert, just… Mathieu is my family. You must remember that."
Gilbert snorted. "Well, duh. The awesome me would not forget something like that!"
"Then you should realize my hesitation, yes?"
"Cousins are totally unawesome, Franny."
"I recognize your dislike of your cousin, but not everyone is the same way."
"Yeah, so what the hell are you trying to say? You want out?" His eyes darkened.
"Perhaps. It depends if you are going to hurt petit Mathieu in any way, I will not participate."
Antonio looked back and forth between his two best friends, not liking how their voices were growing louder and louder.
"Then what the fuck are you going to do? Go tell him and break your fucking promise?!"
"Of course not," said Francis, trying to remain neutral but ultimately failing. "I do not break my promises. You are my best friend, Gilbert, but try to understand."
"Well, I fucking don't!" The more upset the albino became, the more the swearing continued and the more the German accent grew thicker. "You either side with your friends or your family, Francis. Not both."
Francis blinked. "You are going to make me choose?"
"Ja," he answered simply. Now that he thought about it, the more ridiculous their argument seemed and Gilbert was beginning to feel a bit uncertain about his plot for revenge against this Matthew. Was it really worth losing his friendship over? Nein. But his pride wouldn't allow him to back down now.
Gilbert's hot chocolate sat forgotten, now completely cold. Antonio remained quiet. He expected Francis to choose his family, over their friendship. If Antonio were in the same situation, he knew he would. If it was Gilbert's brother who was being plotted against by Francis, Gilbert would choose Ludwig. Naturally, Antonio assumed Francis would do the same.
"I," Francis began, showing no sign of division or uncertainty, "choose my family." His tone was firm and his eyes unwavering.
For a moment that seemed to last much longer than it actually did, Gilbert was silent. What else was he expecting; Francis' choice wasn't at all surprising. "Fine then. Get the fuck out of here." Gilbert was surprised at the evenness in his words.
Easily Francis could have refused or retorted that no, this was America – Land of the Free and no, he would not leave merely because he was commanded to. But instead, he gathered himself, quietly stood and left. The shop's bell tinkled merrily, signaling Francis' leave.
Antonio watched him go, not quite knowing what would happen next. The Bad Touch Trio – their group of best friends forever – had just broken up. Sure, they'd argued before over many things and always resolved them in the end, but now… To be honest, Antonio had no idea. He hoped Gilbert would be able to let go of this grudge for Francis and their friendship's sake.
Hopeful, he looked up.
A pale fist clenched tightly. "I want to know everything about this fucking kid."
His heart sank.
"Are you with me? Or are you going to fucking leave like that French bastard?!" The fist slammed into the table with an angry thud, and the hot chocolate which was no longer hot spilled.
Now who's the one who sounds like Arthur? Antonio silently asked. "Gil…"
He drew in a sharp breath. "…I will help you, amigo." Wait. What was he saying? He didn't want to see anyone get hurt, that was for sure, but he couldn't bear to see the Prussian alone. There had to be some solution to this problem and he would find it. But for now, he would have to go along with Gilbert's plans and everything would work out in the end… right?
Gilbert knew he had a problem with holding grudges, he always had. If something or someone pissed him off, they were going to regret it. Before it had seemed stupid – even to him, although he'd never admit it – but now, this Matthew had ripped apart his friendship with Francis. And that was unforgivable. "Awesome," he said simply. "Now here's what we're going to do."
"So, where should we go? This school's so big!"
"Well, I'd say the cafeteria's out…"
"Let's explore! Maybe we'll find some secret passage or something!"
"…Al, really?" Matthew sighed, a bit exasperated at his brother's imagination. "Anyways, maybe we'll run into someone who'll be willing to be a guide."
"Feliciano looked like he would've."
Alfred and Matthew were currently walking from their dorm building to the school. They had already checked out their building thoroughly; there were a couple bathrooms below, as well as a small and rather well-kept kitchen. There were a few tables complete with sets of chairs, as well as two couches and a TV. It was quite roomy and looked very comfortable. There was another dorm building right next to theirs, which was identical. Matthew assumed it was for people who had dorm room numbers one through twenty-five.
The school was a good two hundred yards from building and it took about five minutes to walk there. It reminded Matthew of a small park - there were trees with its leaves varying from yellow to orange to red, dark green wooden benches, flower beds of all kinds and color, clean and new pavement paths and even a fountain that was kept in pristine condition. The water was pure, and he saw several coins of all sorts decorating the bottom of the shallow pool. He didn't recognize some and Matthew had a hunch they were foreign coins.
"Is the school even still, like… open?" Alfred asked, casually behind his head. Sure, the scene was pretty and all, but he was easily bored by nature. Looking at scenery wasn't really his thing.
"Of course it is! There are a lot of clubs and stuff that meets after school. And some students like to stay and use the computer lab and the library." Though I'm pretty sure that happens in most high schools.
"Huh…" He didn't really see the point of staying after, to be honest. Seriously, who studies anymore? Besides Grumpy Eyebrows anyways…
"Well, for now, I guess we should keep walking around on our own. Maybe we'll get lucky and find someone to show us around." said Matthew as they reached the school.
"We don't need a tour guide."
"Think of it as someone who'll introduce us to everyone and get to know the area better, Al. Or whatever else to convince yourself…"
"Yeah, yeah. After you," Alfred opened the door and held it for him.
"Why thank you, sir. I could never have opened it myself."
"That's what a hero's here for! To help people!"
He smiled. "Whatever you say, Al." They occasionally had silly banters back and forth, for no reason; not unlike most siblings. It put him at ease, knowing he had a healthy relationship with his brother.
They stepped inside and to the immediate left of them was the main office. To the right were more offices that dealt with attendance. The tiles were neatly set in patterns of red, white and green. Red lockers could be seen in the distance in the main hallway.
"How many classes do you have down here?" Matthew questioned. "Mine are mostly upstairs."
"I think most of them are down here… Probably."
"You forgot already?"
"…No, of course not. I'm the hero! Heroes don't forget! Hahaha!"
The Canadian rolled his eyes, a bit annoyed with his brother's forgetfulness. "Okay, let's just walk down here first. Then we'll go upstairs."
"Whatever makes you happy, bro."
So the two started walking down the long, multi-colored hallway and tried to memorize where everything was and where their classes for the rest of the year would be. There were bulletin boards with various news pieces and fliers with updates about what were happening around the school. Classroom doors were still open, and they passed by some language rooms and a computer lab filled with rows of monitors. There were also some printers, faxes, copiers and scanners.
About half way down the hallway, it split off to the left, and eventually led to a door that would lead outside and to a staircase upstairs. "Should we keep going or…?"
"Might as well."
They passed more classrooms and a small, more hidden hallway (Matthew had to drag Alfred away) and they reached the end of the hallway, where another staircase was. At the top was the library directly across and more classrooms.
"I want to see the inside of the library." said Matthew.
"No fair! You get to go into the library, but I don't get to explore the super secret hallway of awesomeness?" His brother whined with a pout.
He ignored him and walked into the library. A desk was on the right and a woman with her brown hair tied up in a large bun sat, quietly reading. She didn't look up as he entered with his grumbling twin. There were several tables, some in the front and to the back, all off to the side. There was one several feet away from the desk, and some comfy looking sofa-like chairs. There were some taller tables with identical computer and keyboards as they had seen in the computer lab room. A few students were lounging about with a book in hand, doing homework or in front of a computer typing away. Rows filled with books of all sizes and colors were kept neatly and everything seemed very tidy, Matthew noted.
At one of the tables sat an Asian boy with a hairstyle that seemed rather similar to a bowl cut, but the bottom strands were longer. His empty brown eyes were staring down at a thick looking book. Alfred's face lit up and he grinned excitedly.
"Hey, it's Kiku!" He nearly shouted, and Matthew winced as some people and the librarian looked up with a sharp glare. She was ready to set her book down and march over to give the boys a good scolding for causing such a disturbance in a library of all places, and how they should respect this prestigious learning area and how lucky they were to even have such an extensive collection of books to choose from for their own entertainment and enjoyment.
Matthew inwardly sighed. He really did think things through too much. But the librarian didn't look very happy; not in the least. In fact, she looked like she wanted to throttle Alfred. "Alfred, be quiet, please!" He hushed, not wanting to be banned from the library for the rest of his high school career. Alfred seemed not to hear him, and bounced over to the boy.
Kiku glanced up, a bit irritated that he was interrupted while in the middle of reading his favorite manga and for the rather obnoxious voice that was the cause. He had no qualms against Alfred considering he had barely met him that day, but he was only slightly peeved at the sheer volume of the voice. "Konnichiwa, Jones-san," he greeted with a neutral expression.
Alfred frowned at the Japanese student in front of him. "Kiku, I told you to call me Alfred! That stuff is way too formal, dude. I mean, I know you have the whole suffix thing and being polite, but we're friends already, right?"
Kiku tilted his head to the side, as if he was considering the request. "If you wish… Alfred-san." It would best not to argue and cause a scene, he thought. But it was almost… endearingthat he thought of them as friends already. Alfred was either extremely friendly or much too obnoxious for Kiku to bear, coercing him into giving up easily.
The American smiled as he was addressed with his first name, and ignored the "-san" part. "Much better! So what're you doing?" He leaned over and tried to peer at the cover so he could read the title, but Kiku immediately set it down on the table, completely flat. Matthew would admit that he was also curious to know. "Reading some manga?"
"Yes." So Alfred knew of manga. Perhaps their friendship could work.
"What's the name of it?"
"Nichijou. It is quite interesting."
Alfred looked like he wanted to ask more questions, but then they'd be there all day so Matthew took the courtesy of interrupting him. "Well, Alfred, maybe we should get going. It's getting late, and we want to see more of the school, eh?" Finding a guide would've been nice, but they could figure it out.
"Oh, right!" His brother easily wriggled out of Matthew's grip to his dismay. "Kiku, can I ask a favor?"
"Very well. Go ahead, Alfred-san."
"Would you mind giving us a tour of the school?" Alfred asked with the most heroic grin he could muster. "Mattie and I'd really appreciate it!"
Kiku hesitated for a moment while Matthew was extremely tempted to hit his twin to knock some sense into him. Wasn't it obvious that he was in the middle of reading and he was trying to relax? Sometimes, Matthew wondered if they were really related. He waited for the other student to say no, but the refusal never came.
"It would be my pleasure," Kiku said, as he stood up. He turned to them and bowed. "Let us go now."
"Are you sure–"
"Alright!" Alfred enthusiastically pumped his fist in the air with a grin. "You're the best, dude! C'mon, let's go. I want to be done by dinner!"
"Hai. Let us go." Kiku gathered his things, and Matthew could only watch as the two started to leave the library after him. He quickly followed, grateful for the Japanese student's offer, but still felt guilty. They had interrupted him from reading his book, which he seemed irritated about. So much for first impressions.
"These are all English rooms here. This is for Math. Down here," Kiku gestured to a hallway that split off to the right this time, "is the Upper Science Wing." The lockers were in sections of green and white, compared to the red ones in the main hallway.
"All of the rooms are for Science?"
"Correct, Alfred-san. This is another English room, that's the Staff room, and these stairs lead back down to first floor. However, we'll keep walking and take the stairs at the end here." He gestured to each classroom as he spoke. "Another Math room, a room for History, more for Math and a Science room."
"Ooh, I have Biology and Math here!"
"These two rooms are for Math as well," Kiku pointed, as they rounded the corner to go back downstairs. Matthew felt a little overwhelmed at how fast Kiku was showing them around, but decided not to argue. After all, they had bothered him in the first place.
They turned right and saw another room a staircase to the left. "This room is the Music Room. Chorus and band practices are held here. There are several pianos, guitars and other instruments to play, and many people use this room a lot as a place to meet. "
Alfred bounded down the stairs to a landing that split the stairs in half and pointed at a door without a doorknob. "What's this?"
"That is a shortcut from the Music Room to the stairs. Many people use it when the bell rings. You cannot enter it from outside; only if you are in the Music Room."
They rounded a corner to the right this time after descending the stairs and two doors were open, leading into a large gymnasium. "This is the gym. We have Physical Education here, and the lockers are down there." He pointed quite a ways inside the gym to the right, past some bleachers. "The bleachers can be folded up when needed to make more room."
The trio retraced their steps to where the stairs were, and Kiku faced to the right. "You already know the cafeteria is there, correct?"
Matthew nodded and Alfred said, "Yep!" Matthew was grateful Kiku didn't mention anything about the incident earlier as they continued their way. The Japanese student stopped and gestured towards the bathrooms and a room across from them.
"The restrooms are here, and the nurse's office is right across from it. The attendance office is also connected through the nurse's room. If you are late by the second bell, than you must check into the attendance office and receive late passes. Otherwise, you will most definitely get a detention from your teacher." He explained without blinking even once, which Matthew found a little weird.
They were back near the main office again, having circled most of the school. "Do you need me to show you this floor as well?" asked Kiku. At this point, he didn't exactly mind anymore, but he would be a polite host.
"That would be really nice, thank you," Matthew said, still flustered at forcing a classmate to give them a tour. Alfred, of course, didn't seem bothered by it.
"Hey, thanks man! You're the best!"
"It is my job as the junior student body secretary to be as much help as I can." Kiku bowed once again and Matthew found himself surprised and not surprised at this revelation. "Shall we go?"
He nodded and they continued their way. "Here is the Freshman Foundations room, where freshman learn how to use computers in greater detail, explore Photoshop and more."
Alfred made a face. "Glad we missed it!"
"Oh, be quiet, Al." Matthew rolled his eyes, and turned back to Kiku. "Sorry, please continue."
Was that a hint of amusement in the Japanese student's eyes? Matthew blinked. No, it was gone. Maybe it was just a trick of the light. "Ah, yes. These two rooms are language rooms, French and Spanish." Kiku pointed to each one, which were separated by a row of red lockers.
"What's this area here?" Alfred pointed to a square like area next to the Spanish room that had a pair of doors behind it. There was an "island" of lockers in the middle.
"Oh, this is Senior Square. All of the seniors' lockers are here, and it's a place for them to relax." His tone seemed a bit… curt. Strange, Matthew thought. But he shrugged it off easily enough.
"Across here before the stairs are both bathrooms. Here is the computer lab," gestured Kiku, as they walked past a water fountain. "If you have a free period, you can come here for a number of things. There are printers, faxes and everything you need. You do, however, should have a pass to come here. You can ask your teacher for one."
"Aww, that sucks!"
Kiku proceeded to show them a few more language rooms, the Lower Science Wing, and some Science rooms until finally they reached the small, hidden hallway Alfred had been so eager to check out.
"So, what's down here?" asked Alfred excitedly, almost bouncing in anticipation. "Is it a secret passage way? Where does it lead?"
"Maybe if you were quiet for a moment, Al, Kiku could explain." Matthew quietly hushed from beside his twin. Kiku looked amused at the American's eagerness, and even smiled.
"The Art Room is right here," he said as he entered the narrow hallway, and showed them into quite a large room. "It used to be the garage, but now we use it for art. Across here is another history room." He walked down towards the end and turned the corner. "Here is yet another history room for American Studies Honors, or ASH for short. It's a required class, but there are only a few actual students who take this class. The rest take levels one, two or three." He turned to the twins. "Are either of you taking ASH?"
Matthew shook his head and surprisingly, it was Alfred who nodded. "Yep! I'm pretty good with American history. It's my best subject!"
"I know more about Canadian history…" murmured Matthew. "But I'm in level three."
Kiku simply nodded. "It depends a lot on which teacher you have, but they're all quite good." There was nothing more in the hallway, and he led the brothers out. He proceeded to show them to the last bit of the main hallway. "Here is the room where the sophomores meet for Teen Roles, which is a required class."
"Yeah, I have it first period!" smiled Alfred, who looked pretty happy. "We go outside and onto the ropes course! It's awesome!"
"All of the elements are really high…"
Kiku looked sympathetically at Matthew. After all, he had dealt with it the previous year. The elements were all fifty feet high and included rock climbing, zip lining, climbing posts and other extreme activities. He felt a bit sick thinking about it again. It was lucky for him that the climbing wasn't absolutely required, he only had to belay. "If you do not wish to participate on the elements, you are allowed to remain on the ground and belay." Matthew was relieved and nodded gratefully.
"Now… Here in the left corner and at the end of the hallway, we have two more rooms for English. Out here," Kiku pointed towards a pair of red doors, "is an exit to leave the school."
"We can leave the school during the day?!"
"No. Only juniors and seniors are allowed to during their free periods and lunch."
Alfred pouted and looked put out. "Man that sucks!"
"You only have to wait until next year and you'll be able to leave." Kiku said, turning to the both of them. "Now, do you have any questions while I'm still here?"
"Would you mind telling us about sports and clubs?" asked Matthew, curious. He was interested in some of the activities and would like to join one if he could. Despite the slim chances, he hoped they would have a hockey team.
"Ah, yes. There are different sports during the different seasons, much like other schools. We have football, soccer, basketball, hockey, fencing and track and field." Matthew couldn't believe his ears and looked at Kiku in shock. He slowly smiled. "For clubs, there are several ranging from the Newspaper Club, Literary Magazine, Yearbook Committee, Art Club, Math Club, Drama Club and Student Council. There's a wide variety."
Alfred nudged Matthew with a bright grin. "Hey bro, you can play here too! That's awesome!"
"Oh? Do you play a sport?" He looked curiously at the boy. Maybe he played soccer.
Matthew nodded, only slightly embarrassed. "Yeah, I play hockey. It's my favorite sport."
"He's really good at it too! No one can beat my little bro!"
"Al, how many times do we have to go through this? We're twins."
"I was still born first~!"
Matthew threw his hands up in the air, exasperated and continued to rant to his brother. Kiku observed the whole scene with amusement. He wasn't expecting hockey. But as they always say, Kiku smiled to himself, don't judge a book by its cover.
Terribly sorry for my later update! I'm busy with, like, seven RPs and school just started... ;;
If anyone's interested, they should check out the Manor of Fate RP! Really angsty and based after HetaOni. And the other main RP I joined is a Chessverse one. It's really awesome! Search "APH En Passant" and see what you can find~. I'm Monaco and Korea! Hope to see you around!
Also I'm sorry for the horrible ending. This chapter is extremely long and it's the longest any of my chapters have ever been... ;A;
(Shit I was just stung by a hornet it hurts)
I hope you enjoyed! Please tell me if you see any typos or mistakes. (Also Prussia and pretty much everyone is OOC I'm so sorry.) Thank you!