Here's the entire chapter 2! Took forever to type up but it was worth it. My gift to you guys. Merry Christmas, Kwanzaa, and belated Hanukkah everyone! And thank you so much for reading/reviewing/favoriting my story!
Disclaimer: I don't own Hetalia or anything else mentioned in this story.
"Really now, must he live on top of such a monstrosity?"
Those were the words that shot out of France's mouth as he carefully eyed the McDonald's restaurant standing in front of him like it was about to suddenly come to life and strangle him with the big yellow "M", fatty ingredients pouring all over him, and fry him to obesity.
Canada, on the other hand, just smiled. Typical France. He had long since gotten used to seeing the giant yellow arches greet him whenever he traveled to visit his brother. Not to say that there weren't any McDonald's in Canada, but you know for sure you're in the U.S. if there's a McDonald's everywhere you go. In fact, not seeing those trademark yellow arches would put doubt in the quieter twin's mind.
"Good thing you've already eaten then."
"No, you have it backwards. It's a bad thing I've already eaten. Let's just go before my food comes crawling back up my esophagus."
"There's still time to leave you know."
"Ah, non! Jamais (1)! Why let an opportunity to beat England just slip by?"
Adjusting his backpack, the North America nation gave out a soft laugh as they headed up to America's floor. France, in all actuality, wasn't supposed to be here. Him and Canada had spent yesterday hanging out together and were going to do the same today, but the French nation had received a call yesterday from his boss telling him to return home the following day. That prompted Canada to call back America to let him know that he could make it after all. His brother sounded excited when he said that since it had been awhile that either of them could hang out together, despite living right across the border from each other. Canada was also told that England would be coming over as well.
When France learned of this, he insisted on inviting himself to the get together just long enough to score against the rosbif, even if it meant delaying his flight back home, where his boss was undoubtedly waiting for him. In any case, when one learned there was a chance to beat your rival, it was almost an obligatory rule in France's mind to seize it and make the best of it.
Once they had reached the apartment door, number 1392, Canada knocked on the door twice before it swung open.
Said nation, equally surprised to see Canada as he was to see him, was about to reply before his jade green eyes focused on a certain someone, caterpillar brows knitted together. "France?" His tone sounded incredulous even to him. He whipped his head back to Canada. "What the hell is he doing here!?"
"He was at my place earlier. He heard about today and wanted to come."Canada shrugged in an apologizing way and, having a quiet voice, had to speak up in order to avoid being drowned out by France's gleeful boasting of how he'll crush England at videogames.
England sighed for the millionth time that day and stepped to the side. "Well, come on in then."
The two eternal rivals shared a glare while Canada murmured a hushed thank you as they entered the absent nation's apartment.
Hong Kong's POV:
It was a pleasant morning outside. The sun appeared to be in a good mood today and decided not to beat the earth down with its burly, burning rays. Clouds scattered in the sky floated quickly like they were going to miss an important meeting somewhere in the stratosphere. Down below, however, were two Asian nations, nicely doing laundry and yard work in the lush garden.
"If you could be any animal, which would you choose?"
Hong Kong looked over at Taiwan for a second and frowned at the odd question. He begun to pin a bed sheet on the drying wire in China's backyard, mulling over the question. Taiwan was watering the plants in the garden, patiently waiting for an answer. It wasn't like she didn't have her own house back on her island, but she always spent most of her time in China as there was always someone she could talk to here. She was a social butterfly after all.
"I would choose… a flying squirrel."
Behind him, he could hear Taiwan giggling. "Why a flying squirrel?"
"Because they're like, really cool." He bent down to pick up the basket that held the cloths, now drying on the wire and twirling in the wind, and offered no further explanation. Hong Kong was a somewhat quiet individual. It wasn't that he was shy or nervous, but he certainly wasn't anything close to boisterous like Korea. In short, he made himself to be quite blunt. It didn't matter whether people understood what he meant or not, as long as he got his word out there, that was enough for him. Having grown up with him, Taiwan was used to the former British colony, yet his responses managed to even puzzle her from time to time. He liked to think of himself as a flying squirrel; everyone knows they can glide, but are always surprised when they do.
"Hey, you two finished yet? Breakfast is ready!" The two nations turned around and saw Macau standing on the porch, arms loaded with grocery bags.
"What do you mean breakfast is ready? Don't tell me we're eating rice porridge without the rice again." Taiwan made a face.
"Just please come and help me put these away." Macau said through clenched teeth, trying desperately not to let a bag slip from his grasp. Hong Kong just hoped it wasn't the bag that contained the eggs like last time.
China returned home from his walk ten minutes later. He was devastated to find out that all they had for the most important meal of the day was chopped up carrots and celery with pomegranate in spite of Macau having just gone grocery shopping. Then again, that's what you get when Macau's left in charge of food, Hong Kong thought. It was then revealed to the eldest nation that only two bags contained anything edible at all; the rest were simply filled with paraphernalia.
"Aiya, when I ask you to go to the supermarket, I want you to bring back food, not junk, aru!" China scolded Macau and lightly hit him on the head with the back of his hand.
"Oh, don't worry, it wasn't a complete loss. I found something I think you'll really like." The bespectacled nation pulled out a sheet from his sleeve and held it out to China. The ponytailed country's face immediately lit up with excitement as he promptly grabbed the sheet out Macau's hand.
"These are so cute, aru!"
"See? I knew you'd like them."
"What is it?" Taiwan peered over and let out an "Awww!" sound. She waved the thick browed landmass over. "Look Hong Kong, they're panda stickers!"
Hong Kong padded to where she was and had to admit, yes, they were cute. "A worthy investment," He glanced up at Macau whilst the other two were occupied looking over the sheet of adorably cute panda stickers, and shared a smirk with him. A worthy investment indeed, especially if you needed something to pacify a certain someone who might get upset at another certain someone for not buying proper food to fill up the near starving fridge. Well played, Hong Kong thought. Macau simply opened his mouth as if to let escape a silent laugh while Taiwan bounced to where he was leaning against the counter and stuck a sticker of a sleeping panda on his cheek.
Hong Kong's golden eyes slid across the clock hanging above the kitchen doorway. "Don't you have to leave soon for the G8 Meeting, China?"
China checked the clock as well. "You're right, aru!"
"Good thing you packed earlier then. It would be in bad taste if the guest were to miss his flight (2)."Taiwan appeared, rolling China's suitcase behind her to the front door.
China sighed. "I hate traveling by air, aru. It's so stressful."
"Just fall asleep. Time will pass by much faster that way." Macau advised.
"And here's one for good luck." The island nation slapped on a sticker of a baby panda and its mother on the suitcase.
The sticker seemed to have made him feel better. Just like a child, Hong Kong thought. "Thank you, Taiwan. And Hong Kong, please make sure they don't use all my stickers, aru."
Hong Kong nodded, waving him out the door, but not before China hugged each one of them. What makes him think I won't use them? "Have a productive meeting."
China shot him a sardonic grin as he got into the taxi waiting outside the house. "As always,"
"Say hi to Japan for us!" Taiwan shouted enthusiastically. Macau also shouted something, but it was drowned out as China shut the car door and the taxi driver drove off, a trail of dust left floating behind them.
A soft Spanish breeze whistled by in the parking lot of the Madrid-Barajas Airport as Spain and Romano were preparing to send off Germany and Italy, who were flying to New York to attend the G8 Meeting. Spain expressed he wished he could walk them both to the building, but him and the other Italy had garden work to do.
"I'm not sure how airport security is these days about food, but just in case you get hungry, while waiting for the plane, I brought a little snack for mis amigos." Spain said smiling, whipping out a brown paper bag and gave it to Italy.
The pasta lover opened it and peered inside. "Oooh, baby tomatoes for me and Germany! Grazie, Spain!"
"Oh no, don't thank me," the Spanish nation corrected as he received a big hug from Italy, "thank your brother. He chose the gift."
"What are you talking about!? It was your idea to give a gift! I just said to give them the baby tomatoes since I like the normal ones better! And they sure as hell weren't for that damn potato bastard!" Romano's fists swung in random directions in the air very animatedly.
Germany simply gave a "Humph" while Italy threw himself at his brother, arms wide open for a thank you hug.
Spain continued on though as if there was no defensive outburst, and ruffled South Italy's hair in an endearing manner. "Aw, Lovi. How thoughtful!"
A plane taking off overrode Romano's bickering and Germany, spiffy in his business suit, took this moment to start saying their adieus. "Well, Spain, thank you for lunch at your house. It was very delicious-"
"I made it, bastard!"
"So have a nice day. See you soon, good-bye." Germany quickly said and picked up his and Italy's suitcases and hurried to the airport, worried about missing their flight since they were already on the late side.
Italy gave each of them one last hug before jogging to catch up with Germany. "See you two later! You should think about attending next time too, fratello!"
The Madrid airport was teeming with people constantly on the go like ants. The loud speakers threw Spanish announcements in the noisy air already polluted by chitchat, crying babies, beeping sounds, and the humming of suitcases rolling on the floor.
"Hey, Germany! Germa-"
Said country twisted around and shushed him. "What are you thinking, Feliciano?! Human names only." He rapidly searched around for anyone who could have overheard them. He wasn't sure about his companion, but he did not want to be thought of as a weirdo. He had a reputation to keep after all.
"Oh right. Sorry Ludwig!"
"Ludwig" nodded, walking briskly towards their gate terminal, "Feliciano" right on his tail. In all honesty, he didn't blame him for slipping up. Not because he was Italy, but because sometimes everyone needed a small reminder from time to time. Even with centuries of using those same names, remembering them wasn't as easy as it might seem when you spend the majority of your time with those like you. With those who don't age.
"Ger- Ludwig! Come on, business class is already boarding."
Germany snapped out of his thoughts and followed his companion to the boarding line. As Italy blabbered on about something involving food, the blond got an odd feeling, as if someone were watching them. He turned around, just slightly, and his blue eyes met the stare of a bald man only two spots away from them. The man, as fast as a blink, quickly whipped his head back to the man standing beside him. Germany chose to shake it off, deciding it was just a fluke that he happened to catch him staring. I'm sure that happens all the time. He was going to add more to that thought until he realized how entirely creepy that sounded. Although that didn't change his mind about the odd behavior of the bald man.
"…and that's how I made a pizza out of pasta!" Italy exclaimed, handing his passport and boarding pass to the woman. The German sighed, knowing he'll be forced to listen to Italy's nonsensical stories on the seven hour plane ride to New York. Before entering the jet bridge, he glanced over his shoulder and this time, he was met with both men's solid stares, his every move being documented by their eyes.
With a somewhat unnerving grin plastered on his face, Russia was sitting comfortably in his seat in the plane. Right next to him sat China, who actually was a bit unnerved by the tall nation's presence. He was just grateful he wasn't squished between him and the window.
When asked what he was doing here in Beijing, Russia replied he wanted to surprise China. The elder one wanted to ask him how he knew he'd be here at this time until he mentally slapped himself. Aiya, I should have never told him that information during our phone conversation! How Russia got the seat exactly next to him was a mystery that China did not want to know the answer to. Probably threatened some poor people with his pipe into giving him that seat.
While people in the economy class were still boarding the plane, China tried calling Japan on his phone, but without success. He sighed in frustration, and dejectedly switched off the device.
Russia looked down at his two empty shot glasses which held vodka not too long ago lying on his tray table. "What's wrong?"
"It's Japan, aru. " China sighed. "I've called him three times already, but it just goes to voicemail."
"Have you left him any?"
"Of course I have! He told me he was leaving early for America a couple days ago because he had business there, but since then I haven't heard of him, aru. He usually calls me after he gets off the plane."
An airline hostess rushed by to take the empty shot glasses away and Russia nodded. China wasn't sure whether the nod was meant for him or the hostess, so he said nothing more. He bent down to put away his cell phone in his bag, when it was suddenly knocked out of his hand.
"Oh my god, I'm so sorry!" China looked up to see an Asian woman, probably Chinese as well, leaning down to pick up his phone and hand it back to him. She smiled at him in an apologetic way. "I keep meaning to buy a less bulky suitcase."
"It's fine, aru." Although the woman had already continued on, past his seat.
Several hours later, Russia awoke from his nap, stifling a yawn. The first thing that hit him was the bright whiteness surrounding him. When he tried raising his arms to stretch and get up, he found he was unable to do so; he was laying on a metal table, arms and legs secured so he couldn't move. He felt chilly, goose bumps rising on his skin. When he lifted his head up slightly, he could see he was wearing nothing more than a thin, white hospital gown. He struggled for a while before the panic really started to kick in.
"Yao? Yao, are you there? ... Yao!"
No one answered him except his own echoes.
A door could be heard being opened and closed with a forceful bang. Footsteps approached to where the violet eyed nation was. Russia's heart beat sped up. In a much quieter voice, he asked, "China?"
There was stillness before an answer was spoken. "I'm afraid your friend isn't here at the moment." The voice was definitely male.
Russia tried to get a better view of the man who just walked in, but was restrained from being tied down. "Who are you?"
"Doesn't matter who I am," There was the sound of a drawer being swiftly slid open, then what seemed to be the shuffling of metal like objects clanking together. "What does matter is who you are."
With that said, the man bent over Russia, vestured in latex gloves and a surgical mask, eyes gleaming. Russia wearily eyed the tool- a scalpel- shining menacingly in his hand.
"Don't squirm too much."
And before Russia could open his mouth, the top half of his gown was swiftly torn open and the scalpel dove right into his chest.
"Ivan, wake up!"
Russia was violently shaken awake by China. His eyes shot open and he frantically looked around the plane cabin, people staring at him, shock and confusion written on their faces. He could feel sweat slide down his face.
In a low voice, China asked, "Hey, are you okay, aru?"
Breathing heavily, Russia felt his hand subconsciously reach for his chest. His heart was still speeding furiously, like he was being chased by a leopard. Or almost being stabbed to death.
"Da. Just a dream."
China slowly nodded. "Don't look now, aru, but we're being watched."
"What? Are you sure?"
"Yes, aru. You remember that woman whose suitcase accidentally knocked my phone out of my hands? Well she's sitting two seats behind us on the other side of the aisle, outside seat. I keep feeling her glance in our direction every so often. While you were asleep, I went to use the toilet. When I came back though, I saw her looking at you, but when she spotted me, her eyes immediately reverted back to her screen."
And speaking of the devil, the woman walked passed them to the restroom, the two countries' eyes glued to her back.
Russia pondered over what China had just revealed to him. Typically, if it were someone else, Russia would have labeled them as overly paranoid. But this was China, and in the years he's known him he's learned that if China was suspicious, than it must only be with good reason. Russia's head abruptly jerked up, remembering something.
"It was on purpose."
The Asian nation gave him a puzzled expression. "What was on purpose, aru?"
The Russian scanned both ends of the aisle before responding. "I didn't think much of it earlier, but when the woman knocked your phone away, I think she meant to do that. If it was truly on accident, your phone would have probably only dropped right at the edge of the aisle. But instead, it got knocked much farther into the aisle than necessary."
China thought it over. "I suppose you're right, aru. But why knock away my phone for five seconds? What could that possibly accomplish?"
Russia shrugged. "I don't know, but we should check up on your phone just in case once we land."
At that moment, the woman appeared again, briskly walking back to her seat. Her eyes flickered to the two nations just for an instant before looking straight ahead once more.
"So you're saying America's been gone for over two hours?"
England nodded. "Essentially, yes. At least since I've arrived. I've got no idea what time he left at though."
"Have you tried calling him?"
"Obviously I have, frog! What do you take me for, an idiot?"
France didn't reply. It was a rhetorical question anyway. He sat in an armchair, legs crossed, and head resting against his hand in a thoughtful manner. It isn't like America to be gone for so long without notifying anyone exactly why. And he almost always answers his phone. He looked at Canada, whose arms were awkwardly fidgety without having Kumajiro to hold. The blue-eyed nation felt bad for him. Naturally, he seemed to be the most worried out of the three about his brother. Maybe he's having one of those twin thing moments? Can he sense if he's in danger?
"Then I take it he didn't answer." Canada asked, or rather stated dejectedly, adjusting his glasses.
"No. No he didn't. Not yet anyway." France rolled his eyes. He could easily tell that last part was England's lame attempt of making Canada feel better.
France shot England a that's-the-best-you-could-do face. England in turn, mouthed, "Can you do any better?"
"Don't worry, mon chou (3), everything's fine. In fact, I'm sure America is on the plane flying back here right as we speak."
The French nation's tone sounded like what one would use to comfort a small child, confident and soothing. Canada actually believed him for a moment. Just a moment, though. Somewhere, at the back of their minds, the three of them knew none of what France said was true. Something bigger was happening here and they all sensed it.
Silence was allowed to settle down for a bit before Canada asked, "Hey France, when did you say your flight was?"
"It's at 5:30." The blond checked his watch. "Merde (4)! I should have left for the airport ten minutes ago!"
France scrambled to his feet and grabbed his bags. His hand was on the handle of the door when he heard a sudden voice. He pivoted around to see England right behind him."
"Why do you have to go to the airport?"
"I got a call from my boss yesterday telling me to return to France."
"But the G8 meeting is tomorrow."
"My boss will probably just send over a representative or something."
England frowned for a moment. Canada and France looked at him, confounded.
"…Is there something wrong?" Canada timidly asked.
The bushy browed nation glanced up at both of them. "Yes, actually there is. France, you can't go."
France looked astonished. "And why not?"
"Didn't you read the note I showed you that America left? He wrote his boss called him in for something. You just said your boss called you in for something as well. America has been gone for over two hours and we've got no idea what happened to him! What if the same will happen to you? If you ask me, the two situations sound awfully similar. Especially when both happened so close to each other."
"England, we get called in from our bosses all the time. What makes this time any different?"
"We don't even know what happened to America."
"Exactly! We're not sure if he's even been harmed."
"And if he has?"
France grumbled in irritation. Why did he have to be so paranoid all the time? All of a sudden, something dawned on him which made him smile. He cocked his head to the side and with that same smile, asked, "Why England, are you worried about me?"
The British country's cheeks reddened a bit before shouting, "No, I'm just-"He racked his brain for anything to add on to his unfinished sentence.
"Just what? Hmmm?"
"I just don't want any more stupid people to go missing!"
France laughed, but detected a serious note in his tone. For once, he actually listened to England. Could he be right? His explanation still seemed pretty valid. Would I be walking into a trap? But why would his boss do that? Why would any of their bosses do that?
He looked at Canada. If the same thing did happen to him as did America, how would Canada react? England would be absolutely no good at comforting the more reserved twin. France could only cringe at the thought.
"Fine. I'll stay."
He could hear Canada breath out a sigh of relief. "Maybe you should call your boss to let him know-"
"No!" Both of them looked towards England. "You might alert him that we know what will happen."
"We're not even sure if-"
"It doesn't matter. Better to be safe than sorry."
"So what then? I shouldn't even call him?"
"Exactly. Just cancel your flight."
France sighed in frustration and pulled out his phone to cancel the flight he was already late for, grumbling something about how exasperating it was to take orders from a puny English snob who thought he was Sherlock Holmes.
While France was doing this, Canada and England strode back to the living room and gazed out the window at nothing in particular.
The younger one spoke up. "What are we going to do?"
England sighed, not sure what to say. "I don't know. But I do know we'll have a lot to talk about tomorrow during the meeting."
(2)It would be… miss his flight=so I looked some stuff up about the G8 on Wikipedia and it's made up of the US, Canada, the UK, France, Italy, Germany, Russia, and Japan, NOT China. But apparently France and the UK have wanted to expand the group to include China, along with 4 other developing countries. The five participate as guests at the meetings. I should mention though that I think all five of them are invited at the same time, not individually like in my story. But for my own purposes, I've just decided to invite China as it seemed the easiest. Don't worry though, I will include other characters!
(3)mon chou=literally means 'my cabbage' but is used as a term of endearment