Chapter 1: The Boy on the Bench

Ludwig sat in his dorm room waiting for classes to start. For some reason, he hadn't been sleeping well at all. It was only 5:39am and classes started at 8:00am, so he still had a while to wait. His Japanese roommate, Kiku, was still asleep and he didn't usually wake up until 6:30am. This meant that he had to not make any noise for the next 20 minutes and 14 seconds. 13… 12… 11… 10…. 'Oh great, now I'm counting down seconds. I can't believe I'm so restless!' Out of frustration, Ludwig stood up from his twin size bed and went to the mini fridge he had in the corner of the room. He opened the small refrigerator door and browsed the small selection of junk food, hoping something of interest had appeared since he last checked thirty minutes ago. This was about all he did when he was awake this early in the morning. Ludwig sighed. He was so sleepy. 'But even if I do end up miraculously falling asleep, it's too late. I'll just up sleeping in.' This bugged the German to no end. He finally decided he could just go on a run around the campus. The idea was better than just waiting around for Kiku to wake up or for more food to make it magically to his mini fridge.

Ludwig was majoring in Political Science as a sophomore in an all-boy's college. The 20-year-old didn't have too many friends. By 'not too many', I mean one. And that was Kiku, his roommate he met last year when they were assigned the same sleeping quarters. Both Ludwig and Kiku were not really sociable people, so they ended up sharing a dorm for their second year. They got along pretty well, so neither of them minded. This year had also just started, so that meant a lot new freshmen were running around aimlessly all over the place. This could become a nuisance if German actually gave a care, which he didn't. Ludwig got his running shoes on after changing into basketball shorts and a black wife beater. He splashed his face a few times with cool water then combed his hair back, not bothering to put gel in it (like usually did) since he was just going for a run. He checked the clock which read 5:43am. The German was surprised. 'I can't believe I took less than five minutes to get ready! It definitely felt way longer than that.' He shrugged it off and then grabbed his room key after whispering "I'll be back, Kiku." Just in case he was awake. Ludwig made his way to the courtyard after locking up.

It was easy to tell that the sun was about to come up and wake all the students for another day of classes. Ludwig was pretty pleased about this. He always found sun rises and sun sets extremely beautiful and likes taking time out of his semi-busy schedule to watch them. Between his classes and working as a "heavy lifter" at the local grocery store, he only had a few hours for himself, and he really valued them. He would use them to go to the gym or read a book. That was pretty much his whole life at the moment. Solitude. Kiku was a good enough dose of relationship he needed. Ludwig looked around for signs of any other students. He saw a few other boys jogging like he was about to do. After a few static stretched, the German was off. This definitely would wake him up and keep him up for day ahead of him. Nothing special was happening, but Ludwig really valued every day and liked to spend them each very carefully.

After a good ten minutes of jogging, something, or better yet, someone, caught Ludwig's attention. It was a very small man who looked extremely out of it. He was sitting on a bench across the courtyard. Ludwig wouldn't have noticed if the man was just sitting there, but he wasn't. He looked to be asleep, and all he was wearing was boxers with an Italian flag on it. The German quickly assumed that this man was a freshman considering the situation he seemed to be in. It wasn't even six o'clock in the morning, and there he was, just in his boxers, asleep, like it was no big deal. Of course Ludwig was concerned, who wouldn't be, but he just didn't care enough to do anything about it, and he didn't want to interfere with any pranks or anything of the sort. All this thinking and distractions made Ludwig unaware of his surroundings and he was not prepared for running into something, or, well, someone. "Ah!" A small voice exclaimed as Ludwig fell into its source: a pair of boys who were facing the opposite direction of where the sleeping half-naked man was sitting. The boy Ludwig ran into directly fell into the other boys arms which caused all three of them to tumble to the ground.

"Scheisse!" Ludwig quickly stood and recovered from his fall then took a look at the two boys on the ground. He knew both of them. Lovino Vargas and Antonio Fernandez something-or-another. He knew Lovino because he was also a sophomore, though they weren't really fond of each other. And Ludwig only knew Antonio (who was a junior) because he was Lovino's boyfriend. A lot of people at this university were gay and no one had a problem with that, but everyone was extremely aware of Antonio and Lovino. Everyone thought their relationship was the cutest thing in the world, but the German didn't understand why. They both seemed very different from one another, he couldn't imagine how a relationship like that would work. "I'm really sorry about th-" He was cut off from Lovino's voice. "Watch where you're going, Ludwig! You're so clumsy!" Antonio sighed as pushed his boyfriend up off of him, stood, then helped Lovino from the ground. "It's fine, Lovino. He wasn't paying attention, and we weren't paying attention, it couldn't have been helped." Antonio brushed some dirt and leaves from the other boy's clothes as he glared at the German. Ludwig felt so embarrassed but also annoyed. It was no secret he didn't like Lovino and Lovino didn't like Ludwig, but we wasn't going to be immature or short tempered about it. "Again, I'm sorry about that." The younger man stuck his nose in the air and Antonio smiled apologetically for the both of them. "No really, it's fine."

Ludwig sighed in relief and determined it would be alright if he just went back to his room. Kiku should be awake by now. "Alright. Well, I'm going to go-" Lovino cut him off again. "Before you go, I'm trying to find my brother. He's in his boxers. People said they saw him out here." Ludwig nodded. "Yeah, he was sitting over there." He pointed to where we saw the boy and it looked like he was waking up. "Oh, thank you, Ludwig." Antonio said and looked towards the direction . The boy on the bench shifted then opened his eyes and looked at the group with a blank expression. 'Oh, it looks like he's waking up.' The boy opened his eyes all the way, stood up, and began running towards the group with his arms stretched out. "Lovinoooo~! I'm so glad to see you!" The German was surprised that he was so awake and gained so much energy within two seconds. Actually, he found it quite impressive, he himself can never be like that. The boy ran up to Lovino and hugged him like he was trying to kill him. Ludwig took a step back and could see how the two were related. They looked extremely similar and they both had one extremely long curl growing from their head, even though they were in a different spot. "Feliciano, get off of me...!" With some struggle, Lovino got the boy whose name was supposedly Feliciano off of him. But that didn't kill the boy's smile. Antonio gestured at Ludwig. "Feliciano, thank Ludwig here for finding you." Feliciano turned to the German and stared blankly at him. 'What is with his guy..? Open your eyes all the way...' There was a long awkward pause of complete silent besides wind and some birds squawking the in the distance. "He's scary!" 'WHAT THE HELL?' Ludwig tried to keep an indifferent face but was so confused and annoyed; he couldn't help but twitch a bit. With that, the three of them turned and started to the dorms. Not wanting to follow to close behind them, the German waited a while before returning to his room. "...What the fuck just happened?"