-Authors Notes-

Woah, what's this I updated? Im sorry guys, my Academic Decathlon competition was up and even though we tried super hard, we got 2nd place /: its ok though! Plus CSTs and CAHSEE shit.

Chapter 22: Something is Up.

Lovino placed his finger tentatively over the burned hole in the wood door, "He clearly intended to shoot me..." Lovino said slowly to himself as he furrowed his brows.

Antonio looked to Lovino quizzically. "But why? Aren't you the lead-"

"Shut up." Lovino snapped as he looked to the large window where the sniper had disappeared. Tension hung in the clear blue night and Antonio felt his irritation rise.

Antonio pressed his mouth into a thin line, "Lovino!"

"C-che cosa?" Lovino studdered, caught off guard. He turned frantically and looked at Antonio in confusion; Antonio had never used his full name.

"Listen to me!" Antonio shouted, a commanding aura around him, "Your Mafia just fired at you, my Mafia is not under my control, and you won't even let me speak!" He took a small breath and his voice softened. He looked to the ground with misty green eyes, "I know I'm not the only one who cares about people behind those doors." Antonio shifted his gaze to Lovino as a loud scream emitted from inside, "Please, even if it's only for tonight, let me help you..." The Spaniard extended an arm out to Lovino. Antonio felt his heart hang by a single thread, one Lovino could make or break.

Blacked leaves rustled on their moonlit branches as Lovino looked disdainfully at the hand. He exhaled deeply and ran a hand through his hair, "Fine." He stated curtly, "Only for tonight."

Antonio sighed in relief and pulled back his hand, "That's good enough for me." He stated, his green eyes shining with happiness.

-In the ballroom-

"Mattie get down!"

Matthew retreated quickly behind the turned over table, "Alfred I can take care of myself!" He shouted over the hail storm of bullets, "Just take care of the people with you!"

"MATTIE! NO!" Alfred screamed, his voice quickening in panic, "PLEASE MATTIE!"

Matthew bit his cheek in rebellion and rushed a group of five behind a pair of flipped tables. He bent down and urged them to be quiet as he began loading his pistol. A few tables away he saw Arthur protecting another small group and Alfred yet another. The guests shrunk behind Matthew and tried to calm each other, even though they were all shivering, blubbering messes.

Suddenly, from the side, a young boy, no older than eight, rushed from behind a plant to the table. Shots fired rapidly and the boy cried out in fear, curling up in Matthew's lap, "M-mama!" he wailed, vibrations racking his small body.

Matthew placed his gun on the floor quietly and looked around frantically for the child's mother. He hadn't looked to far when he saw a woman with matching strawberry blonde hair, face down, beside the plant the boy had run from. A pool of vermilion blood lay underneath her and it didn't take a doctor to tell she was gone.

The little boy gripped Matthew's suit and wailed, "M-mama! Mama! W-wake up!" The boy grit his teeth and tears flowed heavily down his face, "M-mama..."

Matthew felt tears prick at his violet eyes and he stroked the young boy's strawberry hair, "Shh... there there." He said in a soothing manner as he picked up his gun, "e-everything will be fine." He looked around and a dangerously loud bullet whizzed over the table. The crack of the gun made the boy flinch in fear and shrink further into the Canadian's arms.

"W-what about m-mama, will s-she be ok?" The boy asked, his hazel eyes shining with a false hope.

Matthew looked down at the boy, unshed tears in his eyes. He motioned to another one of the hiding guests and placed the boy on her lap, "Here s-stay with the nice lady." He said soflty as he looked to the woman, "Please, take care of him." He whispered. The woman nodded, her blonde ringlets bouncing with her. He smiled gratefully and listened as the steps grew louder.

A pale white hand rested on his shoulder and Matthew's violet eyes widened when he met crimson ones, "G-Gilbert?"

Matthew felt a piece of him fall in relief. Gilbert was his friend, before the Mafia and after Peter. It was interesting how they met actually. Gilbert being more outgoing and brash than even Alfred, and Matthew being shy, and quiet, made the pair quirky, to say the least.

To be honest Matthew tried to cut ties with Gilbert, but it was difficult. After the incident with Peter, Matthew had shut himself out from the world.

-Flashback-

Matthew lay in his bed, silent. He couldn't sob anymore; His body could make no more tears. His tear stained pillow looked darkly appealing to his thought heavy head and he placed his head in the pillow. It was getting harder to breath. He noticed this in satisfaction, not fear. Slowly the world would fade to black, and his semi-conscious body would suffocating itself in the dense pillow. He smiled as each breath became harder and harder to take.

Suddenly a loud crash sent him shooting up. Matthew gasped for air and looked frantically around with wild violet eyes. His window was completely shattered, a brick having gone nearly exactly in the middle.

"TAKE THAT FRANCIS!" A loud proud voice shouted, "KESESESESESESE!"

Angry, annoyed and frustrated, Matthew meandered through the glass pieces and peered out the window, ready to completely cuss out whoever disrupted him.

In the yard there was a teen, a few years older than him with a shocked look on his face, "oh shit." He said slowly before running off towards the long line of houses of the suburban neighborhood.

"HEY! HEY!" Matthew shouted, quickly throwing on something acceptable and running a comb through his hair, "You hoser!"

He rushed down his stairs and followed a trail of yellow feather from the canary on the teen's shoulder. Said teen was actually only about 5-10 feet ahead of him.

"I got you, you fucking idiot!" Matthew screamed, his hair disheveled from running and his glasses crooked.

"Matthew?" The teen asked, his canary chirping after.

Matthew stopped. People rarely knew his name, "y-yes?" He said, his voice losing its volume, "Should I know you?"

-End flashback-

After that, Gilbert smiled and introduced himself, even apologizing and offering to pay the window. Gilbert showed honest interest in Matthew and became determined to befriend the boy.

Since then, Gilbert showed Matthew the scars on his pale arms, told him the story behind each one, and how he stopped. It was inspiring to Matthew. He stopped being locked in the house and slowly moved on, forcing Alfred with him. Alfred never met Gilbert, for when Matthew mentioned another friend, Alfred flaired with jealously. But regardless, Gilbert was one of Matthew's closest friends.

Matthew smiled a little before reality hit him. His eyes widened. "Gilbert... you're a Beils-"

The albino nodded and pressed a finger to the Canadian's lip, "Look, I'm on your side. I've always been, Birdie. Whether you believe me or not, is not my problem." He removed his finger from Matthew's lips and placed a hand on his hip where the outline of a pistol could be seen, "Liz has gone crazy and turned on Tonio..."

Matthew furrowed his brows, not knowing who he was talking about. Gilbert paused, "There is no more Carriedo vs Vargas" he said slowly as he strained his to listen, "This is good vs evil."

"W-what?" Matthew studdered

"They aren't here-" a loud voice shouted, snapping Matthew back to the world.

"Shut up and look harder! Leave no table unturned!" A hardened voice, who Matthew recognized as Giovanni, spat.

"Yea! Those two can't hide for long!" Another voice sang, her voice sickly sweet yet acidic.

The footsteps came closer and the guests held their breaths as Matthew gripped his gun tighter. He glanced to Gilbert and Gilbert responded with a crooked smile.

A loud gunshot was heard and the body of a 25 year old man slumped over the flipped over table, blood pouring from his mouth and head. The little boy snuggled closer to the woman and the guests cried out in fear.

"BEHIND THOSE TABLES!"

Matthew cursed under his breath and jumped up from behind the table, his gun aimed and ready; however, the group of gunmen where headed towards Alfred's direction. Gilbert watched the sides and quickly shot any gunmen intending to sneak up on them.

Alfred's blue eyes lit with a fiery flame and began shooting, dodging and ducking behind the granite top tables.

"THERE ARE MORE! USELESS IMBECILES, OVER THERE!" A woman with long brown hair shouted, pointing towards Matthew's and Arthur's direction, "KILL ALL WHO ARE NOT AFFILIATED WITH US!"

A man with shimmering black hair nodded vigorously, "Yes ! Juan, Franz, Louie target that corner!" Said members nodded and began firing furiously at the table where Arthur and his group lay hidden. The black haired man smirked when he saw Matthew pop his head out from behind the thick granite table. He aimed and fired. Matthew gasped and felt two arms grip his shoulders, pulling him down. He hit the floor, he swore he could feel the bullet graze his hair.

"MATTIE!" Gilbert shouted after he pulled Matthew to the ground, his vermilion eyes angry in fear and concern "DON'T EVER DO THAT AGAIN!" He pulled the smaller into a tight embrace and sighed in relief before letting him go. Gilbert winced in pain.

Matthew blinked and felt his face heat up before shaking his head. He thanked Gilbert quickly before turning to the guests. "I want you all to stay behind here!" Matthew commanded, "Do not worry, I will get you all out of here soon." The sickening crack of granite undermined his statement and Matthew made a quick prayer. Gilbert looked to the sky and then to Matthew. Purple eyes met red and in a silent agreement, the pair stood up, their guns cocked and ready.

-Out on the Balcony-

"Lovi, stop!" Antonio screeched, his heart racing as Lovino slammed once again into the solid wooden doors, "Amor, j-just stop!" Antonio placed his hands on Lovino's shoulders and looked at him concerned.

"I have to break this door!" Lovino growled through gritted teeth, "I heard Mattie!" He screamed, his voice rising in hysteria, struggling in Antonio's grasp, "Alfred is in there, Arthur is in there! I don't know what he plans on doing!" He furiously rubbed his bruised arm and stepped back for another charge.

"Lovino!" Antonio shouted, restraining his love, "Calm down, lets try another way! You promised to let me help you!"

The struggling ceased and Lovino went limp. Alarmed, Antonio released Lovino, "D-Don't worry, mi amor! I will protect you-"

SLAP.

Antonio felt the sting before he understood what had happened.

"I'M NOT A HELPLESS BAMBINO!" Lovino yelled, desperately fighting back tears. It was too much for one night. His emotions were scattered. He wanted nothing more than to crawl into the fetal position and cry, cry untill he stopped breathing, but he couldn't, "LISTEN TO ME! I'M NOT A DAMN PRINCESS! I'M NOT A GIRL! LET ME BUST THIS FUCKING DOOR!"

Antonio touched his cheek before looking at the ground, "I'm sorry you felt that way..." He said quietly, the pain in his voice cutting Lovino, "I never met that you were a girl, someone fragile to the touch, but how else can I help you if you wont let me?"

The balcony grew silent and only the light hum of fireflies and even behind the door, it was silent. Antonio sighed deeply and looked up, just in time for Lovino to throw an item at him.

Antonio blinked and caught the small brown bobby pin, "Open that door... Antonio." Lovino said, his golden eyes shining with unshed tears and a burning fire.

A flashback to the day he had asked Lovino for a bobbypin to unlock his apartment door played in Antonio's mind. With a small smile, Antonio nodded, "Gracias... gracias Lovi..." he managed to say.

-In the Ballroom-

"Alfred!"

The blond American looked wildly to his side and exhaled heavily when he saw his friend Arthur, "God, Iggy you scared the shit outta me." He grumbled, peering over the table for a sign of life.

Arthur huffed but tugged at the American's sleeve, "I need some munition." He whispered.

Alfred nodded and emptied his pistol as Arthur kept guard. He only had three shots left. Looking to Arthur and then to the table where Mattie was, Alfred sighed and emptied his pistol, "Here I only have three to spare"

Arthur nodded in gratitude, "You left enough for you, right?"

Alfred looked to his gun and smiled, "Of course after all, this will all be over soon."

Oh how wrong he was.

-Authors Notes-

Hayyy look who's back! Sorry guys, i got crazy busy but dont worry, prepare urself for the onslaught of chapters. I love u all, thank u for waiting c': next chapter will be up next Sat. Is that ok? Ill try to upload earlier but i have finals next week /:

review question:

How would u feel if your whole class knew u read/wrote yaoi fanfic?