Woo! New story! This is one of five Hetalia stories I'm currently writing, and is the only chapter I've ever written in one go, then uploaded. I plan to use country names in my non AU stories because they feel more authentic to me.
What I do own is, well, what I hope to own in the next half-year is a one-way plane ticket to Japan to study abroad for a year. And that is so far looking like it will probably happen!
Enjoy in moderation!
"Prussia? What is this?"
Hungary knew very well what was on the sheet of paper she had just read. And when Prussia had come bolting out of Germany's house, she knew very well that she had two options: 1) Pretend that she hadn't seen anything, balled the crinkled sheet of paper back up, and tossed it with the rest of them, or 2) Confront Prussia. What she didn't know for certain was the awkward position to which her question would lead her in the near future.
Prussia's stance was frozen in horror, mouth open with a shout he was about to use to get her attention before she could see the contents of any one of those balls of paper. But he'd been too late. When he threw open the back door to his house, she'd been standing there by the recycling, reading one of them.
For the entire back story on what was unfolding, you'd have to go back about five hundred years. 1526, to be exact. September. For the reader's sake (as if you believe that's why…) conversation has translated to modern-day lingo.
The cool weather of fall felt good on the Prussian's skin. He was lying in a meadow near his house, his mind cluttered with thoughts. Some about the fact that he was freaking starving, others were ones that he wished he could somehow force from his mind.
Prussia turned his attention right and slightly behind him. He knew the voice well; it belonged to a good friend of his from when he was the Teutonic Knights. It was crazy to think that it'd hardly been a year since he was forced to give up that name. Those were fun times, and they'd would have given him a good distraction from his thoughts, but they'd come to an end, much too quickly. His friend was human, and most of the members of the order had always found it easier to just call Prussia by a human name rather than "Teutonic Knights." Rolled off the tongue more easily and didn't get confusing.
"What are you doing out here? Lying in a meadow looking pensive doesn't suit you," he joked, coming to a stop by his friend, still standing. "Come here to be alone?"
"Ah, you know you're always welcome, Huppert. I just came to get out of the house," he replied. His friend took a seat next to him. "I've had a lot on my mind, as of late."
"I can tell; you've been acting weird ever since that one day you came home with no pants." Huppert stifled a laugh; he had a very easy-to-trigger sense of humor, but Prussia's mental preoccupation with whatever it was hadn't been cured by Huppert's earlier attempts at laughing it off, and it probably wouldn't be cured by it now.
"That was the day I found out she was a girl… I should have known…" Prussia said wistfully.
Huppert was the kind of guy who, up-front, seemed very carefree and simple. Underneath the top layer of his personality, though, were many things, and one was the ability to read others with the accuracy of the Hubble telescope. Or whatever was extremely accurate in 1526. The change in voice, the way what he said was phrased, and color of his friend's eyes to a slightly deeper shade of red let him know with near certainty that his hunch was accurate.
"So~ This whole mental conflict has been over Hungary then."
Prussia's face dropped at the truth being said aloud, but there was no reason to deny it. Huppert might poke fun at certain things, but he would never make a friend feel bad about something important to them. He also had a way of talking about things that neither isolated nor patronized the person he was talking to. If anything, he was the perfect person with whom to talk about his thoughts. "Yeah," Prussia said simply, not sure what else to add.
"So, Gilbert has crush on Miss Hungary."
Prussia made some sort of horrible noise as this even more blunt truth struck him.
"Are you going to tell her how you feel?"
"TELL her; wha-" Prussia's jaw dropped. "She would kill me before I finished the sentence! 'Hungary, I like you-' *WHAM!* No more Gilbert!
"She hates me," he continued with less fervor. "We've always been arguing and fighting, ever since we were children. There's no way she could possibly accept my feelings, much less return them. And I've been particularly nasty to her since I found out about her gender."
"A woman's heart is a strange thing, my friend," Huppert replied wistfully. "I know men and women who have been the worst of enemies and become lovers when the man admitted his feelings. Their emotions are strong, but brittle. Of course, this doesn't always work, but if she's worth a try, it is always worth a try."
'If she's worth a try, it is always worth a try.'
Hungary was tired. She was weak, and overworked. Being torn apart was an incredibly painful experience for a country, but the Ottoman Empire was showing her no mercy, even though the war was over.
Her only solace was the end of the day, when she could finally curl up into her bed and find refuge in her dreams. But even there, reality sometimes plagued her. Blood, screams, tears, and pain. Wasn't it enough to see it in real life? Why did it have to follow her here?
Still, sleep was worth it for the chance that she would dream about something nice. A prince, arriving on horseback, to help save her country and its people from these butchers.
Something abnormal at the top of her eyes made her raise her bowed head. In the light of the lantern in front of her house, she could barely make out silver hair. What was that jerk doing there, and how did he get all the way to her house!
"What are you doing here, you jerk, and how did you get all of the way-"
"Good evening, Hungary." His voice sound slightly strained, which spoke volumes more about his mood to Hungary than it would to someone who didn't know him well.
Hungary's eyes widened. "Prussia… I see you're back to calling me by name…" She didn't know what this meant, but at the very least it meant he was being more civil. He hadn't tried to harass her yet, and his voice had a civil tone and was saying civil things. And… he'd called her by her country name. Ever since he'd found out she was a girl, he'd began calling her by a human name, claiming that "girls can't be countries, Elizabeta." It was a low blow. She'd just lost an incredibly important war, confirmed that she wasn't male, and then, even though it was by an idiot like Prussia, she'd been "demoted" to human status. It was really uncalled for insult-to-injury. She'd never let him know it, but for the first time in their rivalry, she'd gone home and cried because of something he'd said.
"Would you care to get off of my property?" she requested bitterly. "As you can probably see, all I want to do is sleep right now."
"I.. um… actually came here to tell you something," he said sheepishly, in a low tone. He forced out each word, fear striking like lightning through his mouth during each syllable.
"Well, unless you're here to admit your secret undying love and devotion to me, make it quick."
That was the straw that broke the camel's back. Prussia, who was under an extreme amount of nerve-caused stress, snapped.
He laughed. Loudly, and obnoxiously. In her face.
"Like I would ever fall in love with someone like you who can't even defend her own country! Tell you what, Elizabeta, maybe someone like YOU should fall in love with someone like ME, so I can protect you from the big bad Ottomans. After all, ever woman needs a strong man t-"
His vision went blurry and his head spun. If it weren't for the fact that his jaw wasn't broken and his face stung terribly, he would have assumed he was punched due to the sheer force. He was scared to look at her, but he had to.
He had good reason to be scared.
She didn't say a word, but her violently trembling posture and the look on her face said everything, and everything was chewing him up slowly and painfully, roasting him alive in searing flames, enjoying every moment of his torture, ripping him limb-from limb, and if he died, reanimating his corpse over and over to rinse and repeat for eternity.
And with that, she stormed into her house, and slammed the door.
Prussia stayed for several seconds in that state of mindscrew in which his body and mind had lost connection, back when Hungary had last spoken. Suddenly, the connection was regained, and the information of what the heck just happened came flooding into his brain.
"Oh God, forgive me… I'm such an idiot…" he murmured in a low tone. He grabbed one of the porch rails and leaned on it for stability, palming his entire face.
Inside the house, near the other side of the door, he heard something hit the ground, then a sharp inhale, followed by heavy sobbing. He took a peek inside the window to find Hungary sitting, crumpled on the ground. On the ground to her right was a frying pan; she'd been coming to use it, probably with the intention of decapitating him. And she was the obvious source of the tears, as she'd buried her face in her hands and her shoulder shook.
'Oh God… I'm so sorry…' He wanted nothing more in that moment but to take her into his arms and cradle her as he whispered every apology in the world into her ear. He was in such a state that he couldn't even keep sappy thoughts like those out of his head. Or out of his actual actions. Before he knew what he was doing or could think for his safety, his hand had found the doorknob, and he was entering the house.
"Hungary… please forgive-"
There was something beautiful about her face in that moment. Prussia's mind took a flash-frame image of her, hair wildly flowing around her, face livid, tears glistening on her cheeks, arm pulled back to throw the frying pan she'd once again wielded. He almost paused so long looking at her that he forgot that she was hurling a freaking frying pan at him. Yes, he deserved to get hit by it, but he wasn't so sure if he deserved what would happen to him if he got knocked out by it and was subject to Hungary's non-extant mercy, so he swung the door shut as a shield.
The pan loudly hit the door, causing a large fissure to splinter down the center of the door, and it clattered to the floor. He opened the door again slightly, but the sight of Hungary scrambling to her feet, murder in her eyes, was enough for him to pull the door all the way shut, turn tail, and run for his life.
"I… take it it didn't go too well, then."
Prussia glared at Huppert over the sharp and vivid hand-shaped bruise on his face. He wouldn't be leaving the house until that cleared up. Currently, they were sitting in the library in Prussia's house, Prussia slumped over the writing desk and Huppert occupying a chair by the window. They had another very close friend with them that day, Carsten, who Huppert had brought along to see how the confession to Hungary had gone. All three had beers in hand; when Huppert had seen the state Prussia was in that next morning, he realized that it was time to roll out a keg of the good stuff.
"I told her she was a failure of a country and that she needed a man like me to protect her," he deadpanned. "I'm the worst."
"I wouldn't say that, buuut, you certainly could have done better. At least you came home alive and in one piece." Huppert rose a good point with that last one.
"Barely. She threw a frying pan at me with enough force to nearly split a wooden door in half."
"I'm glad you dodged that one, buddy. But you have a lot of apologizing to do. Crush or no crush, that's just the right thing to do."
"Yeah, I know," agreed Prussia. "It's just… I don't know what's wrong with me. Every time I get stressed out about this romantic stuff, I sort of… lose it. I just start dishing out the insults."
"Sounds like your superiority complex is getting in the way." Carsten took a swig of his beer after speaking.
"There you go with your psychology crap again," teased Prussia. Carsten liked to think of himself as one, and even though his friends teased him because he wasn't specifically studied in it, he was actually relatively good.
"I'm serious. You're always going around, showing off and boasting about how awesome you are: Superiority complex, like we've mentioned before. Confronting Miss Hungary about your feelings makes you afraid that she won't accept you, that you're not good enough, or inferior in some way. When that stress from inferiority builds up enough, you reach a boiling point, and you attempt to untactfully re-establish your superiority."
Carsten's psychology stuff may have been annoying, but Prussia be darned if it didn't make sense. Either way, he rolled his eyes dismissively as he always did when Carsten was on his shrink pedestal. "Then if I can't actually tell her, how am I supposed to tell her without telling her!"
"You could get someone to tell her for you," suggested Carsten.
"What am I, a boy!" Prussia scoffed at the immaturity of the strategy suggested.
"I meant, for example, hire a bard to sing praises to her."
"Too sappy." Prussia cringed at the idea, and could just imagine Hungary's laughter. He'd never live that down.
"What about a letter?" Huppert said in a pensive tone. That could work… You get to say what you want to say, there's less stress because she's not there, and you won't blow up in her face again."
"Good idea! And in a letter, you can plan what you say before you say it," added Carsten.
"Huppert. You're brilliant!" shouted Prussia.
"I know," he said, jokingly being conceited. "Oh, but I would write her a letter of apology before I wrote the love letter."
"That can be done," agreed Prussia. "I don't know how to write a love letter, though! Whenever I think of them, I think sappy French or Italian love junk. I will write one that is much more awesome, but I may need your help in writing it."
"That's what friends are for, right Carsten?" Huppert said with a grin.
"That is correct." He smiled back.
"Right then." He un-corked the bottle of ink in front of him, grabbed his best quill, and put nib to paper. "Let's get to work."
I think this story will have two or three chapters total; I was originally planning on a one-shot, then a two-shot, but I think it will be three. I will also have a sequel. I plan to take this story in a direction that some people might not like, and I'm going to try to appease the people who aren't satisfied with the ending in a separate one-shot. Thanks for reading!