I don't even know guys. This RP, done with the lovely jetsir as she's known in most circles, has currently stolen my soul and is the reason I am behind on everything. However! This thing is here just so you know that we're still alive and working. Better news though, is that this is all written so I just have to get time to edit and post it. Should be updated daily with each chapter being no more than 2,000 words and no less than 1,000.
A weird thing though is that this is an RP, so there's an omniscient narrator going on. This is weird for me to post, because for other stories Lucky and I clearly distinguish who's thoughts we're following by line breaks. This is sort of free flow. Jetsir takes credit for all of America's thoughts, while I took on a 2p!Romano.
It would mean so much if you could drop a comment and I swear the other stories are on the way, particularly SLK. *SPOILER* England sits on a chair of things that are not living.
Okay, so onto the actual story. I only take credit for half of this and none of Hetalia.
Three days passed since Romano came to this world, and still he wasn't sure how it happened. Things were so different here, so much more peaceful, or so it seemed. He refused to be lulled into a false sense of security, which was why he had chosen this vantage point on a park bench. His tired eyes watched the passing people. They all looked oblivious to what was going on around them, chatting, playing, and eating. Romano cataloged every one of them: height, build, gender, age, searching for a possible assassin in the fold.
He reached into the paper bag on his lap and took out a few breadcrumbs. The fat, cooing pigeons waddling around his feet lunged as he tossed them out onto the pavement.
Meanwhile, America unknowingly made his way through the very same park, whistling whatever tune was topping his charts at the moment. What a great day to be the hero! He looked around with a burst of pride in his chest at all of his people enjoying the day. The sun was shining, the birds were singing, and - wait. He paused when he saw a familiar man sitting on a bench feeding some pigeons. Was that Italy's brother, Romano? He looked… different. New hair cut? What was he doing at his place outside of a meeting? Last he checked he and Romano weren't exactly friends. Whatever. Maybe now was his chance to change that. With his signature grin spread over his face, he called out to him. "Yo! South Italy! How's it hanging, dude?"
Romano's hand paused in its gathering of another fistful of breadcrumbs when he heard a voice, so familiar and yet so different from the one he knew. He tore his gaze away from profiling the park goers, and felt his heart plummet. It wasn't him. The blond hair and obnoxious smile were so far from his America that it almost sickened him. Still, this person looked as if he knew him, and the last thing Romano wanted was to draw attention.
"Ciao." He threw another handful of crumbs to the birds.
America tilted his head to the side in confusion, drawing closer to the half-nation. Romano looked…off? He couldn't place it, but the man stitting before him definitely didn't seem right to him, and his inner sense of heroism told him that it was his job to find out. So, squaring his shoulders, he made it his mission to find out what was bugging South Italy and what seemed just so…wrong about him. Without ceremony, he plopped himself down on the bench next to the Italian. The sudden movement scared off the birds, but America paid no heed and got straight to the point. "What's getting you down, broski?"
Romano studied him carefully. His hair was blond and his eyes were blue, but he had the same face. The same face he had touched, had worked so hard to touch. Yet what could he say? That he was in a different world from his own? That he was confused by all the technology and the people walking around in the open as if nothing could hurt them? It didn't make sense to him. He looked back down at the pavement as a few of the braver birds returned for a handout. "I'm just waiting."
"Waiting, huh?" America's brows furrowed in confusion. Such a mysterious answer. He was never one for all that ominous stuff, that was more down England's alley, what with his Sherlocks and Chambers of Secrets. He followed the Italian's line of sight and watched the birds with him for a few minutes before saying, with a half shrug and a carefree smile, "I've never been one for waiting, s'not really my style. Heroes are all about the action, you know?" He nudged the other with his elbow playfully, before turning his bright smile on his gloomy companion, as if he could will his cheerfulness onto the other.
Romano turned to the other and nearly lost the fraying self control he was sure that kept him alive. This was a different world. He didn't know the rules, but the way this person talked…it was so much like America.
"Are you America?" His hand dipped into the bag, and the sleeve of his uniform rose, revealing the string of still fresh bruises from Feliciano's latest rampage.
America blinked. Well he hoped he was America… if not, he was wearing someone else's flag on his underwear. He opened his mouth to answer, but froze in shock when he saw the bruises. Ugly things, really, and obviously defensive. "Shit, man!" he gasped, reaching out to Romano. "Who did this to you? Are you okay? Is your brother okay?" If Romano was hurt, there was a pretty good chance that his meeker, more cowardly brother was hurt, too. They were, after all, the same country, and America, oblivious as he was, was able to make a connection such as this.
Romano watched him take the arm blankly. He wasn't sure why he looked so shocked. "Of course he's fine. He's the one that did it." He said it simply. It was no secret that Feliciano attacked him on a regular basis. Even the America in his world knew.
America stared. Something was definitely wrong with Romano. "Dude, you know your brother wouldn't harm a fly. I think the last time he tried he ended up hiding behind Germany, waving his white flag at it. Were you hit on the head? You aren't yourself…" That would explain the odd behavior, because Romano really wasn't himself. The more he stayed in the company of the other, the more America was beginning to realize what was off about the Italian. He wasn't snapping irritably about anything, no cursing, "Potato Bastards," nothing. He seemed so…submissive. Defeated, even. Just what was going on?
"Maybe not your Feli, but its the only thing that keeps mine alive." Romano watched as one of the birds he was feeding the longest lost its footing, fluttering its wings as if trying to escape its own death. It squawked and a wriggled its plump grey body like a fish out of water. Romano watched as it went still. The other birds continued to eat as if nothing had happened.
America swallowed thickly, a chill running down his spine as he watched the bird take its last breaths. Maybe he was a bit slow to read the atmosphere, but he was reading it now in nice, bold print. More than off. Something felt dangerous about Romano, this Romano, for America had a feeling that he was not the Romano he was used to. For once in his life, he spoke quietly, evenly. "You're…you're not from around here, are you?" He stared at the man, the stranger, next to him, critically, really observing him for the first time.
Romano looked at the horrified expression on this America's face and turned away. It was too painful. As horrible as his world was, his America was there, with that beautiful dark hair and those red-tinted eyes. "No." He said. "I don't know where I am."
Paranoia, forged from years spent in a Cold War with that damn Russian, began to creep into the edges of America's awareness, a jerk reaction to anything that wasn't as it first seemed. He forced himself to shake it off. For some reason, he felt that he needed to help this alternate reality half-nation, like it was his duty, some sacred promise he'd made and had to fulfill or it would gnaw at his conscience until the end of time. He stood. "C'mon, I'm going to help you." He stared expectantly at Romano, not about to turn his back to him. Just because he was in hero mode, didn't mean for a second he would fully trust this man.
Romano looked up at the other nation, or what he assumed was a nation. He didn't know in this world, and he could almost imagine a bat in his hand. It made his heart ache, a weakness Feliciano constantly liked to exploit. "How can I trust you?" he asked as if it were a simple question. Another bird began to flop about before falling still. Again, the other birds didn't acknowledge it and continued to eat the poison.
America looked past Romano and to the birds, that he finally realized were falling dead at the fault of the Italian man. He looked up, and into the other's eyes, an eyebrow raised, "I could ask you the same thing." He shoved his hands into the pockets of his bomber jacket and added after a moment of silence. "Besides, the way I see it, this isn't just about you. My Romano's probably in deep shit right now, and since I'm the hero, I need to save him. I figure you're probably a good place to start." He frowned inwardly. It was sort of awkward referring to Romano as his Romano. It came off as sort of relationship-y to him, but he hoped he got his point across, regardless of how it looked to the other.
Sure enough, the question was asked with a blank face. "Are you in love with this world's Romano?"
America froze. Of course he didn't love this world's Romano. Sure, he was attractive, and stylish, and the way he got so flustered could be cute sometimes, but hey, America was still a teenager in body. He had thoughts like that about practically every nation except those dirty communists! Well, there was that phase he went through during prohibition… He shook himself out of it, flushing scarlet. Then, totally ruining the serious, if not downright morbid, atmosphere, barked out "Wh- Of course not! Can't a hero be a hero without a reason!"
"I suppose." Romano looked back at the dead birds scattered around him. Only their glossy feathers moved in the wind, their eyes staring blankly. "You're nothing like him." He stood up, leaving the remaining bread crumbs on the bench. "But I'll go with you if it's what you want." He was tired of running and fleeing, and all this technology and all these bright flashy billboards practically screamed for a bombing. He shouldn't have been out in the open.
America opened his mouth, about to ask who he was nothing like, but closed his mouth with a soft click as he answered his own question. His alternate self. Of course. He wondered what his connection was to the Italian in the other world, but that was something to think about at another time. So, making sure Romano was walking alongside him, not behind him, in case he did anything tricky, he began to lead the other through the crowded streets of the city and to his penthouse apartment. On the way, jostling through crowds of people who either apologized politely or went about their business, he began to formulate a plan of action.
Thank you for reading. This gives me so many emotions later down the road! Shuts me in a glass case of them! Reviews are love and I hope I didn't butcher 2p!Romano. His descriptions are vague so that you can imagine your own design for him.