I am ashamed at how late this is. *Babbo means daddy in Italian.
Disclaimer: I don't own Hetalia nor the songs of Little Mermaid 2: Return to the sea.
Magyar stirred from his fainting spell, his foggy vision clearing little by little until he saw the worried face of his beloved niece. From his spot on the couch in the drawing room he could feel the warmth of the fire on his face. He yawned and stretched out, rubbing the stubble on his chin, "How long have I been asleep?"
The Hungarian sighed, "Almost a whole day uncle. Have you not been sleeping well at home?"
"I sleep fine. The trip here was- now just a second!" Memories of what transpired last night resurfaced and he began to sputter. With narrowed green eyes, Magyar sat up on the couch, "Where is that little crustacean?"
"He's a merman, uncle, and he's out at the moment with Prince Arthur and Alfred."
"A-a merman, heh. Yes, quite." Magyar leaned against the couch's back rest to stare at the ceiling. Had he not seen the little blue crab turn into a merman with his own eyes he would've dragged his niece back to their home in Hungry. But he had seen. He'd seen how the creature…the man, uh…fish? How he'd grown a tail and offered his hand to him like a normal person. Magyar ran a hand through his long brown hair in thought. "Dear, I have a question. How long have you two been dating?"
"A few years now." Elizabeta tapped her chin, "I'd say about ten."
"Ten. And why am I just now hearing of this?"
"I wasn't sure I could tell you, Uncle. I wanted to but the sea king didn't want many to know of their existence."
Magyar's eyes shot open, "Th-the what?"
"Sea King. His name is Robert, he's the eldest son of King Triton and Arthur's big brother, well, the oldest and-Uncle!" Elizabeta reached out and gently shook her uncle to wake him, "Please don't fall asleep again. It's not good for you to sleep so much."
"This is too much, Lizzy. Mermen. Sea King! Next you're going to tell me that our Prince Alfred gave up his crown because he married a Sea Prince because he was planning to join him under the sea."
"I was joking, dear."
"I'm not." At her uncle's expression she sighed once again. "Uncle, this is real. You know it is."
"I know that but my brain is still trying to wrap itself around the idea." The elder Hungarian massaged his temples with two fingers. Elizabeta sat next to him worried about the verdict. They sat quietly for a few minutes with only the crackling of the fireplace as a form of comfort for the anxious woman. Finally, Magyar decided to speak up, "Is this…man the reason why you look strange?"
Elizabeta's hand immediately went to her seashell pendant, "So, you've noticed then?"
Magyar snorted, "You thought that I wouldn't notice that you haven't aged since I've last seen you? Or the others for that matter? Don't offend me, child. I am your uncle after all."
"Don't be. I'm the one who should be sorry." He noticed her face morph into one of confusion so he reached out and pulled her close like he used to when she scraped her knees when rough housing with Gilbert in their youth. "I shouldn't have reacted the way I did."
"It's ok, Uncle Yar Yar."
The elder man smiled into her hair at the term and held her a bit closer, "So…a merman lover, huh? How is that working out? He hasn't hurt you has he?"
"Roderich is a gentleman, uncle, he'd never hurt me." 'Although there was that one time he made me faint,' she thought to herself, though perhaps it wasn't a good idea to tell her father figure that her current boyfriend saw her in the nude before they were even acquainted. "And so far everything's been going wonderfully. He was tasked with looking after Peter so he got to stay in the castle with me."
"How…how is that going to work? Are you going to keep him a tub for the rest of his life?"
"No, Uncle. I was hoping that you'd give us your blessing. We were going to ask for it last night after the party but after everything, we figured that it was for the best if we just waited. Especially with Peter running away."
"Wait, what?" Magyar sat up straighter and pulled his niece away enough so that they could look at each other. "What do you mean he ran away?"
Elizabeta frowned at the memory, "I think it was because of what happened at the ball and from my understanding he also found out that he's connected to the sea." At her uncle's confused expression she gave elaborated, "Peter is Arthur and Alfred's son, their real son. I can't tell you how it happened just that it did. Oh, Uncle, there is so much you don't know." She took her uncle's hand in hers took a deep breath before letting it out slowly, "It all started…"
Roderich and Robert were looking over a map of the oceans, red X's marked where they'd looked and had no luck. Kyle had come out to check on any progress but had to go back when their niece insisted that they'd make cookies to take to the mommy-kiddy tea party the next day. He and Sarah left just as Arthur returned from his search. The young sea prince had his eyebrows furrowed in worry, "Have you heard from our brother's, Bobby? Did you have any luck?"
"I'm sorry, lad." Robert ran a hand through his red hair sadly.
"I don't understand…" Arthur slumped his shoulders miserably and leaned against the rail of the wall, letting his fringe fall over his eyes. "This is all my fault."
"Arthur, you can't keep blaming yourself. You made a mistake but your heart was in the right place. Could you imagine how I would've turned out if I allowed myself to brood over every time I messed up while raising you and your brothers?"
"You did," muttered Roderich under his breath but the brothers ignored it.
"This would go so much faster if I just gave him the family ring." Arthur pulled out a white gold ring with a teal gem held in place by a nest of thin metal shaped like seashells. "Had I given him this then our rings would've glowed in the presence of his. Of course I never, n-never…" The blonde squinted and saw dark teal scales with a flash of gold. An indescribable surge of joy filled his belly, really the only silver lining in this whole mess aside from seeing his family.
"Feli," whispered Arthur to himself, a grin spreading across his face. He gave a giggle and launched himself towards the auburn haired merman with the strange curl that would defy even the worst of the underwater currents. "Feli!" The prince wrapped his arms around his best friend, pressing his chest tightly against his back. The merman gave a surprised squeak and froze.
"B-BABBO!" The little merman struggled against Arthur's embrace until he managed to escape, making a mad dash for an open door of a house.
Arthur's heart stopped and the joy was replaced with embarrassment when he heard rapid Italian exchange inside. The merman emerged, fearfully gripping onto a larger merman's arm. He stared at Arthur with wide blue eyes, his curl fizzing as he gave another yelp and buried his face against his father's tail.
Feliciano looked around to see what all the fuss was about when his eyes landed on someone he never thought he'd see again. A broad smile broke through his own face as he took in his childhood friend standing sheepishly a few paces from him. The sea prince hadn't changed much with the exception of a few lines from the stress parenthood often brings but those were easily overlooked by the lines near the corners of his eyes from the joy it brought as well. "Ve, it's been too long, si?" The Italian took a moment to gently pry his youngest son's arms from his waist and offer words of comfort before dashing straight into Arthur's waiting arms.
Robert and Roderich exchanged knowing smiles as the two friends, no, two brothers reunited. They watched Arthur and Feli twirl together and hold each other closely, giggling like they did in their youth.
"Poseidon," exclaimed Arthur when they finally pulled away enough to get a good look at each other, though they didn't let go. The sea prince poked at Feliciano's new abdominal muscles and squeezed his bicep, "You sure aren't a guppy any more are you, Feli?"
The Italian giggled again and ran a hand through his slightly longer hair, "Luddy helped me. We figured that it would be a good idea if I had the means to defend our home should he ever find himself away. They're nothing compared to your older brothers or my husband." He patted his stomach fondly, "But I bet I won't get stuck like I used to should we ever go exploring." He and Arthur turned around when they heard bickering.
"I already told you, fratello," cried Ezio with annoyance. "He isn't my boyfriend."
The blonde snorted and brought his arms across his chest, "Is that so? Then why did you write him that love letter?" He took no pleasure in the blush that spread across his twin's face. It only confirmed what he feared.
Arthur took in the sight of both mermen arguing amongst themselves, "My word, are they…"
Feli sighed and nodded, "They're my first borns. Amadeus. Fabrezio," he called. The twins turned to face their father with their full attention. The older merman extended his arms in invitation, "Amadeus, figlio, what have I told you about teasing your fratellino? Let him have his little lover, it's cute."
"Papa!" Fabrezio covered his face in embarrassment while Amadeus gave a slight growl of annoyance. The boy Arthur had embraced; Marcello overcame his fear and swam closer to the group, right into his papa's arms.
The older Italian turned to Arthur with a fond smile, "Bambini." When he saw his friend's smile evaporate his own smile disappeared. He held Marcello closer to his chest, "I heard about Peter."
Arthur looked down sadly, "Ludwig and Alfred are searching via land."
"I know." Feli placed a hand on his friend's shoulder, "If there's anything I can do, Artie…"
The prince placed a hand over the slightly tanned one and nodded, "Please, Feli. I could really use your help. Come look with me?"
Feli pulled out his half of the sea seashell charm and smiled, "Wild seahorses wouldn't stop me." He leaned in give Arthur two kisses on his cheeks before addressing his children. "Boys, I'm going to help my friend, ok? If you're done with your homework you can go play with Raivis and the others." The three boys gave their father a kiss before swimming away deeper into the city while Feli left with the Arthur, Roderich and Robert.
They'd been swimming steadily for an hour now, Peter, Willem and Patrik had been deep in conversation while Erik held on to his red headed cousin's hand. He looked over his shoulder to the vast blue behind them. It was odd. He couldn't help but feel like someone or something was following them and it made him uneasy. He let out his breath in a tiny stream of air bubbles making him smile. He continued to make bubbles to distract the tingle in his tail.
Peter looked over to Patrik with wide eyes, "So, you guys have never been to Atlantica?"
The red headed merman shrugged, "I lived there when I was only an infant with my dads and uncles. Then Uncle Emil got married to Aunt Lilly and Erik here was born. Later Uncle Lukas was named headmaster of Sve's Academy and that was that."
"How do you guys know the way to Atlantica then?"
"I lived in Atlantica a bit longer. My parents recently moved up here because my mom and uncle got a job at the academy as music instructors. Dad was happy enough 'cause he got to be with his brothers," said Willem as he twirled every now and again, "but I get to come down more often cause of my Uncle Tino is really good friends with my friend's dad."
"Yeah, but we're always up for adventures, right Erik?" Patrik gave his cousin's arm a gentle shake when his young cousin didn't respond.
Erik peered through his white bangs and nodded softly, "But I'm always up for making art more." He glanced back once again. Ok, he was almost positive that they were being followed this time. He opened his mouth to say so but was interrupted by his cousin.
"I know you do, Erik but you've got to admit that adventuring is so much more fun!" Willem swam further ahead with a grin, "Taming the tides, swarming the seas." He giggled and swam up to a random fish, "Beware barracudas drop to your knees!"
Peter's eyes widened when an actual barracuda fish caught sight of them and started chase. Patrik pulled his cousin close and grabbed the blonde prince's hand to get them to safety, "Defending your friends and anemones." The small group cautiously looked around to make sure the coast was clear before continuing on. "We may not be as big as a whale-"
Erik wiggled his chocolate and ivory colored tail, "And our fins may be small."
"We'll face our foes with our fearless flukes!" Willem pulled up his fists and punched at imaginary enemies, "Daring the ba-er dastards to put up their dukes." The young blonde merman gave a weak chuckle at Patrik's glare. Perhaps he shouldn't repeat certain words his dad and uncle would say.
Patrik rolled his eyes at his cousin and let go of Erik's and Peter's hands, "Great globs of gore, we'll storm up the shore and seek the unknown." They swam near a water volcano, startling the young mermen.
The little white haired merman jumped back into Patrik's arms with a whimper, "Then can we go home?"
They rose back up to the surface so that Willem could get a quick look of his surroundings before continuing their journey. Peter grinned, for once in the presence of others his own age, really enjoying himself. He listened to his friends happily sing as they rode the massive wave, "We're Patrik, Erik, and Willem, adventures slash-"
"Artists!" Peter giggled at how the two older cousins rolled their eyes at Erik.
"We're Patrik, Erik and Willem, adventures slash artists!" Diving back down into the sea the three younger mermen followed after Willem.
The blonde fixed the little hat on his head with a grin, "Our gallant quest to do our best and smile for our adorers. We'll save the day!"
"And make a splash," sang Peter.
"We're Patrik, Erik and Willem, adventurers slash artists." Patrik's eyes widened when they swam past a sunken ship and immediately turned back, the others swimming after him. He reached out and touched the mast in curiosity and pulled out a small sword embedded . He chuckled to himself and swung it against the beam of wood as if it were an opponent, "We'll clobber the bad guys with their evil 'cahaws'!"
Peter recognized the vessel as one of the Beilschmidt trading ships and took Erik inside to where he figured the Captain's cabin was. Forcing the lock open he pulled out a small painting of depicting water lilies and handed it over to Erik whose eyes widened with glee. With the painting clutched against his chest, Erik shyly reached for the blonde's hand to hold.
Meanwhile, Willem picked up a broken telescope and looked through it from his perch on the edge of the ship, "We'll shatter those sharks with their savage jaws. The battle is fierce-Woah!" He swam up when the ship tilted over the small trench in protest to Patrik's instant hits. The damage wasn't so bad, the ship simply turned over in itself, showering the three mermen with golden coins and other treasures. Willem squeezed himself back in to find Patrik grinning sheepishly at his cousin and new found friend.
The sea prince let out a laugh and tugged himself and the smaller merman from the pile of gold then turned to help up the red head, "The conquering heroes return as kings of the reef."
Patrik reached out for Erik's small hand and they all exited through a small crack to continue their journey pausing to wait for Willem who had found a small opalescent pearl and placed it under his hat to give it to Ezio when he saw him. Hopefully Amadeus wouldn't be with him. For some reason the slightly older twin hated Willem with a passion. Shrugging the thought away he thought of his wayward curled friend and grinned, "We'll dine with the best, dressed with flare. Climb every mountain because it's there!" He didn't care if who or what obstacle he'd have to overcome. If it meant he got to be with his best friend then it was worth it.
The red headed merman took note of his blonde cousin's blush and smirked but decided not to tease him. Instead he grabbed Peter's forearm and swam faster, "Come on, follow me, we'll make history. To courage!"
"The Trident," added Peter excitedly when he saw a faint golden glow ahead of them.
"We're Patrik, Erik and Willem, adventurers slash artists!"
"They're Patrik, Erik and Willem, adventurers slash artists," chirped Peter happily, "They'll save the day-"
"And make a splash! Come on, Peter!" Erik tugged at his friend's arm to make him swim a bit faster. The glow they could see was becoming more prominent which sent a wave of excitement through the young prince.
Willem and Patrik flicked their fins faster to keep up, they grinned down at the little merman who was still clutching the little painting to his chest, then at their friend. Peter returned the grin and all together they sang, "It's all for one and one for all. Atlantica, here we come!"
Peter now understood why they could see the glow miles away. His jaw dropped when he saw the kingdom of Atlantica, the entire place was made of golden colored coral. There was a thin veil covering it like a bubble but that only added to the splendor of it. His friends exchanged smiles with one another, happy to see that their capital of sorts had impressed their new friend. "I knew it, it does exist. Atlantica!"
Damien looked up from his drawing when he heard his mistress chuckle. He watched Natalya smirked before opening her red eye. She had exchanged her remaining eye with Vladimir in order to be able to see what the merman saw as he and Milen trailed after Peter. "Indeed, little comrade," she purred, "Just go on a little further." Closing her eye again she addressed the two mermen trailing after the prince and his companions, "Boys, be sure that no interferes with the prince's return. I don't want anyone to ruin this chance for me."
Peter's blue eyes took in every minute detail they could. Atlantica's beauty from the outside was nothing compared to how breathtaking it looked on the inside. Thoughts about how much his adventurous fathers would love seeing something like this briefly flowed through his mind but he shoved them as far back as he could. He turned on his back and swam backwards so that he could watch other merfolk go about their business, "Oof!"
"Oh, I'm sorry are you ok?" A small blond merman with a light sea foam green tail and reflective purple scales turned around with worried eyes. He checked Peter for any injuries, "I didn't mean to hurt you."
"I'm alright, no need to apologize. I should've…sh-should've-um." Peter felt his cheeks redden in shyness by the merboy in front of him. "I should've paid attention to where I was swimming," he murmured softly, looking away. "Sorry."
"No, no!" The blonde merman with feathered like hair brought his hands up to his chest and wrung them nervously, "I should be the one apologizing. You see my friends and I are playing a game and I'm supposed to be guarding our goal but…" he turned around and motioned to the group of kids ahead swimming quickly after a ball, "my team mates are really good and they hardly ever let anyone get close enough to our goal."
"Uhhuh." Peter stared at the other merman before him still enthralled to see more like him. Sure there were his new friends but…there was something about this one that-
"My name's Raivis."
Raivis smiled softly and reached out a hand to shake Peter's, "I said my name is Raivis."
"Ah, my name's Peter. Peter Dorian Jones."
"Dorian's a pretty name."
Peter blushed, "Thank you." Before he could ponder if it was proper to comment on another's tail, he blurted out a compliment making the merman before him blush as well.
"Thank you. I got it from my dads. My papa has a pink tail which is where I got the purple and pink scales, see?" When he lifted his tail to show the reflexive pink and purple the ball his team mates and opponents were chasing hit him over the head. "Ow!"
"Sorry, Raivis." Fabrezio swam up to his teammate with the ball tucked under one arm, "On the plus side, the ball didn't make it into the goal, right?" He turned to face Peter and raised his eyebrows in surprise. "Ciao, I don't think I've seen you around here before."
"His name's Dorian. Peter Dorian."
Fabrezio looked at the boy up and down curiously in effort to place his face, shrugging when he couldn't. The young Italian smiled and reached out for Peter's hand, "The name's Fabrezio but you can call Ezio. Want to play with us?"
Peter, in awe from how easily he was being accepted began to nod yes when he felt his hand, or rather Ezio's hand, roughly ripped from the hand shake. The young prince turned to see Willem glaring at the Italian with the strange curl, "Really, Ezio? Do you always flirt with other boys when I'm not around?"
Ezio furrowed his brow in confusion, "What are you talking about? I was just asking him if he wanted to play with us."
"And you needed to hold his hand to do that?"
"I was just giving him and handshake, Will." Ezio smiled and reached for his friend's hand, "See? A hand shake."
"Bruder, what are you doing?" Peter watched as another blond merman came up to the Ezio, he too had a peculiar curl and he was glaring daggers at Willem.
"Really? Has anybody heard of a handshake?!"
"You're holding his hand awfully long for a simple handshake, bruder. Won't that one girl be jealous that you're holding some guy's hand more than you do hers?"
"What?!" Willem ripped his hand away from his friend, "So you do flirt with other people!" The blonde merman swam angrily away from the group and towards the general direction of his Uncle Vash's home.
Fabrezio gave his brother an angry look, "Why would you tell him something like that? You know how jealous he gets." Turning back towards Willem he swam after him, "Wait Will! He's lying, Patty and I are only friends. Oi! Wait up!"
Amadeus growled in annoyance and chased after his brother as well leaving behind a flustered Peter and Raivis. Raivis rubbed the back of his neck sheepishly, "I'm very sorry you had to see that we aren't that crazy, I promise. Amadeus is really…um-"
"Insanely possessive of his baby twin brother? Yeah he is," muttered Patrik as he swam up to Peter and Raivis, Erik clutching to his hand while he looked around the city in awe. The red head addressed Peter, "You know I always tell Willem that he can try all he wants but nothing's going to happen with that brute always trailing after Ezio. Think it's bad now? Just wait till we get older."
Erik frowned, "Well, they are twins, big brother." At Patrik's sudden blush he smiled to himself knowing that he struck a chord within his cousin, "They were inside that dark vessel with nobody but each other for company. I think their bond is deeper than normal siblings."
Peter giggled, "You know for a kid you really have a great perspective of things." He saddened, "I wish kids on the surface were more like you guys."
Raivis furrowed his eyebrows in confusion ,"Surface? You're from the surface? Like a human?!"
"Never mind that," interrupted Patrik, now tugging both his cousin and Peter along towards the castle, "We are actually in a hurry."
"We have to go find that thing, Peter," hissed the redhead.
"R-right. Um, goodbye Raivis, it was nice meeting you!" Peter sent a wave over his shoulder and allowed Patrik to usher him along.
Raivis waved back, "It was nice meeting you, too. Maybe we can play when you find what you're looking for!"
"Yeah, sure maybe!" The young prince gave a soft grunt when Patrik gave a small yank at his arm. "What?"
"Are you crazy?!" Patrik rolled his eyes, "You almost blew our cover! Do you have any idea who that is?"
"Yeah. That's Toris's son. He could tell his dad that we're headed this way and then we'll never find what you're looking for."
"He's the guy who is always talking to the sea king," murmured Erik. "Why are we even going to the castle anyway?"
"Cause I think that's where they keep the treasure. That's what you're looking for right, Peter? Your friend's treasure?"
"I think to her it is." Peter lightly touched his locket in thought, "It kinda looks like a fork to me."
Peter followed Erik's pale finger towards the Trident on its stand, "Golly. Yeah, that's it. Come on let's go grab-woah! Patrik what are you-"
"Shh!" Patrik pulled his friend and cousin behind a column as a group of merfolk set out a table before the throne. A mermaid draped a white cloth over it before two others placed a few plates on it. When they retreated for more things he motioned for them to follow him, Erik curling his tail under him. The young prince lifted the table cloth and lowered it quickly again with a gasp. "What?"
"He's out there."
"The guy who stole the fork from my friend. He killed her brother and took it."
"Woah, woah wait." Patrik wrapped an arm around Erik's small shoulders and glared through the table cloth, "killed?"
"Yeah," murmured Peter as he lifted the cloth again. It was strange. For some reason he didn't feel scared as he probably should be. The merman pacing back and forth near the throne was a sight in itself. His entire tail was covered with golden scales that reflected darker tones with every swish it gave. His torso was well toned but he looked like he hadn't eaten all day. Or slept given the dark circles under his piercing green eyes. What surprised Peter the most was probably his eyebrows. They weren't as bushy as his or his papa's but they certainly were thick. He wore thick gold cuffs around his wrists, noted Peter when dropped them to his sides with a sigh before dropping himself onto his throne.
Robert tugged at his red locks to relieve his headache. Things were certainly not looking good but he didn't want to tell Arthur that. Christian and the twins had already reported back stating that the oceans between the new world and Australia were quiet while David reported that no one had seen or heard from Peter in the Oriental waters. "Man," he whispered to himself, "This is the worst thing that's happened to this family since our parents died." The sea king pulled out a large seashell framing a picture of his nephew as an infant. Feli had painted it for him after they learned that Arthur would postpone his and his family's return to the sea. That and the correspondence Ludwig would bring in helped alleviate the heart break he and his brothers felt by not having their baby sibling with them.
The young prince bit his lower lip, "He seems so sad. That guy doesn't look dangerous." Peter wondered if perhaps Natalya had made a mistake on the identity of her brother's killer.
"I wouldn't judge a merman by his scales, Pete. Besides the fork is right next to that chair. Obviously, he's the thief."
"What the hell are you guys doing?" Peter dropped the white cloth with a gasp. He heard Erik whimper from behind him. Chancing another peek his eyes widened at the new mermen hovering next to the red head. He had an olive colored tail and dark auburn hair with a funny looking curl. His eyes flared in anger at his subordinates and he yelled again, "You guys really think we're just going to sit around for a meal when the sea prince is out there missing?!"
"Lovi's right." Robert stood back up, anger rising in his belly as he made his way towards the table. "We don't have time for this. I want every available merman out there searching!" He slammed his heavy fists onto the table, startling the three mermen underneath. The sea king turned around to look at his guards and servants, "Find him. Find my nephew!"
In his anger, his tail swished rougher than usual. The current it made the table drag along the floor and away from him. The merfolk scurried to do their king's bidding. Peter dashed to hide inside a large planter while Patrik and Erik swam back under the table, knocking a plate over in the process. Lovi noticed the table shake subtly as if something were underneath it. "Bet it's that damn turtle my idiot husband bought Fabian," he muttered to himself. Antonio had wanted a pet and between him and the adorable child that was their son, the duo had managed to convince Lovi to allow them get one. What he hadn't counted on, though he really should've seen it coming, was Antonio coming home with not one or two or even three but six little turtles. Now the Italian had to deal with them following him to work and finding them in the oddest of places. The only plus side was that they weren't tail nibblers to which he was very grateful of.
Erik buried his face in his cousin's neck and tried to curl himself as tightly as he could into a ball on his lap. He let out a small whimper of fear, "Big brother?"
"Hmm?" Patrik brought his tail up to try and roll himself into a ball as well. "What is it?"
"I-if we don't make it through this, I want to apologize for saying that your pictures aren't art. I think they came out very well for someone with no artistic talent."
The older merman gave a breathy chuckle. Leave it to his baby cousin to find a way to insult is lack of artistic skills through a compliment. "It's ok. I'm sorry about that thing on the club house's."
"What thing?" Erik pulled back and glared at his cousin through his white fringe, "That was you who painted over the mural I made?!"
"Shh! Yeah, and I'm really sorry."
Erik was about to retort but decided against it when a shadow loomed threateningly through the table cloth. Lovino was about to lift it up to retrieve the turtle when Roderich suddenly swam in, "Bobby, Lovi. Your brothers have returned." Peter watched as both mermen followed the plum tailed merman out the room.
As soon as they were away from sight, Peter rushed to the Trident, the nagging thought that he had heard that voice somewhere before shoved to the back of his head. Unfortunately that did push the thought about how sad the golden tailed merman had appeared which brought on the possibility that Natalya had been mistaken. His hands paused in mid reach for the Trident.
"Oh, sure take your time, Pete." Patrik and his cousin came out from under the table. "Why don't we just sit back and wait for Mr. Anger Issues comes back and kill us?!"
"Sorry." The young prince held onto the golden shaft of the Trident tightly, the metal glowing brightly in acknowledgement. Peter tugged on it until it came out of the shell with a small pop. "Wow, this feels strange. Powerful! With this I'm sure Miss Natalya will make my tail permanent!"
"Yeah, yeah. Let's just go before they come back."
"What about Willem?"
"He'll meet us at the surface," assured Patrik. "But for now we need to get out of here. Come on lets go."
"Wait my necklace," cried Peter in alarm when he couldn't feel the heavy medallion around his neck. His blue eyes zeroed in on it resting against the shell the Trident was sitting in.
"I'm sure, he'll turn up soon," rumbled a concerned voice. Robert was coming back! Erik looped his arms around Peter's own while Patrik looked them through his right and both Nordics led their friend out and back to the surface, the latter struggling to return for his necklace. He gave up when he saw that the man was returning with more mermen and decided that perhaps it was for the best.
"Ve, he's right, Arthur." Feli gently squeezed his friends hand in reassurance, "We'll find him."
Arthur tried to smile but it came out more of a grimace, his eyes widening when he realized that the stand next to the throne was empty, "Robert, the Trident!"
"But that's not possible," muttered Lovino, his eye brows furrowed. "Only you can remove it from this stand. Well, you or one of your brothers."
Roderich picked up the necklace, "Or someone of your blood line. Look."
"But this is Peter's. How could he have possibly gotten down here? Even with his lungs I doubt that he would've found Atlantica by chance. Not to mention we would've been informed if someone saw a human swimming about the kingdom."
The sea prince exchanged glances with his brother, "You don't think Natalya has something to do with this do you?"
"It wouldn't surprise me, baby brother." Robert rubbed his stubbled chin worriedly, "This is bad, Artie. If she gets a hold of my Trident…Lovi, send word to the others. I want my brothers back as soon as possible and tell the remaining guards that they are to double the search parties! I want every creature on patrol."
The older Italian nodded quickly and did as he was told. Robert patted Arthur's shoulder before heading out to do some more searching himself, leaving behind Roderich with his two previous charges, "Arthur please forgive me. I never meant for any of this to happen. I should've been more insistent and kept him inside, I should've…"
His rant fell on deaf ears. Arthur was too busy listening to his friend whisper words of comfort and enjoying the light massage Feli was giving his shoulders. Two shadows caught their attention. "Ve, Artie did you see that?"
"Yeah, who the bloody hell is that?" Arthur squinted his eyes above him to see their faces better, letting out a small gasp when he placed them. "I know those two."
"You do? Who are they?"
"R-remember that one time in high school when you and I pretended to date because these two guys wouldn't leave us alone?"
Feli flushed at that, "Yeah…"
The Italian's face darkened considerably. He remembered that they did more than just mess with them in their youth. They were also present the day of Peter's debut but not many recognized them in their stingray form. "Bold of them in the palace." Amber eyes followed Milen and Vladimir as the two mermen smirked their way and swam casually out.
"Let's follow them."
Both mermen swam after the stingray prone mermen leaving behind Roderich who, in his monologue failed to notice that he was now alone in the throne room. The spectacled merman sat on the Trident's stand, "If I had only paid attention to the signs. I mean I knew he wasn't happy but I couldn't say anything to you, Arthur, without blowing our cover. You didn't know Robert had me watching over you and Peter. Peter didn't know his uncle had me assigned as his caretaker. Hell, as far as he knew, he could speak to animals. But I swear to you this, when we find him, I'll always keep my eye on him and report back as soon as I see something funny. I'll be diligent!" Roderich curled his fingers into a determined fist and pumped it into the air, "I promise that nothing will ever get past me!"
Roderich smiled to himself, "What do you say, Arthur? Hmm? Arthur? Feli?" Looking around the room, the dark haired merman cursed. "Oh, come on!"
Hm. Well, Happy New Year for one. I hope everyone had a great holiday, mine was hectic which is part of the reason as to why I didn't update this story. Anther reason has to do with my school; had to apply to another college in order to get an credit for Microbio. Hate that they're not offering it at the one I'm going to now so we'll see how that goes...having to commute to two institutions literally on opposite sides of the city. Anyway, that's been taken care of so I should be posting the next chapter soon. I see two chapters for this story to wrap up: one ending and one epilouge. Thank you to everyone who has been with me so far it means so much. I'm VERY VERY sorry for this chapter to have taken so long to be posted T_T
Feliciano isn't buff or anything he just gained a bit of muscle in comparison to his youth. I noticed that he did in the latest season of Hetalia and wanted to incorporate that. I know how he and Arthur interact may seem a bit strange, almost like lovers but I assure you it's not. In The Little Merman I explained that I always thought that merfolk were affectionate creatures, even more so because these two are best friends. Not to mention they haven't seen each other in twelve years...so yeah lol. Just wanted to get that out of the way.
Also, Patrik and Erik didn't see who the Trident actually belongs to nor are they aware of what Robert looks like. They know of him though but don't have a face for the name.
Until Next Time~
Marshal Thompson: Thank you! I hope you had a wonderful holiday as well. ^_^
VivaAmerica: Thank you so much for the review! I hope that this chapter makes up for the long wait.
zoewinter1: I know T_T and I just made him do something bad. Thanks for the review =3
pastaadict: Thank you for the review ^.^ I wanted to make it so that even sea creatures could be mean to break Peter's illusion that everyone is perfect in the sea but I hope I made up for it by the rest of the children being friendly, lol for the most part. Also, thank you so much for the review for Love Has No Recipe. I'm glad you enjoyed the chapter. It was a long wait for that one too T_T
aycee-san: I'm happy to hear that =3 Erik is starting to grow on me too lol he's just so cute! I hope you liked reunion between the two long lost friends.
Sandra DeNite: I'm very sorry that I didn't update soon T_T but I'm glad you like the trio and Peter! Thank you so much for the review, it made me smile lol =3