"Feeling any better?" Spain questioned softly. He was lying beside the smaller Italian on their bed, his tan hand slowly stroking the boy's auburn hair while his immobile one stayed lazily by his side.
"It's been over a week and I still can't walk because my legs were burnt almost off! Do you think I'm feeling better, idiot!" The Italian snapped emotionally, swiping the man's hand away with a harsh movement.
Though he was happy he did, Lovino couldn't wrap his head around the fact Antonio had rescued him like he did. Still, he was pissed off, alarmed and even more emotionally unstable as usual.
At night he found himself being jerked awake by nightmares of a certain English pirate and flames trying to devour him. Every time, his face was hot and his small body sticky from sweat but he knew the hot tears running down his face wasn't the perspiration. Thankfully, Lovino didn't think Spain noticed when he woke up like this, except for a first three nights where he was shaken awake by the damned Spaniard for screaming in his slumber. He was glad that was so temporary.
Antonio just sighed and rolled over to face him as his hand was slapped away, keeping it missing from his head. "I'm sorry
"You should be. None of this would've happened if your stupid ass didn't fucking kidnap me!" Lovino retorted back instantly, rolling on his side like the other, but so his back faced him instead. He squeezed his eyes shut, trying his best to get rid of the rest of the world.
"That is no way to treat your Capitaine!" A strange, new accent spun into the air. Lovino's eyes shot back open, staring around for the strange source. His hazel eyes lying on a tall, long haired blonde with a slight beard and colorful pirate clothes.
"F-Francis?" Antonio stuttered oddly. "What are you doing here?"
The Frenchman chuckled, the sound making Romano shiver.
"Well, you see, my friend. I heard you were hurt, so I came as quickly as I could to help you in your state." The man grinned widely. "Well, me and Matthieu, of course!"
The strange Frenchman glanced behind him, his arm reaching out to someone who stepped forward and he wrapped his arm around
"W-What?" Lovino sat up, ignoring the scorching pain that ran through his injured legs from the sudden movement. "A-Alfred?"
The boy blushed, his cheek color matching the red scarf wrapping around his head. He was holding some sort of bear too, the Italian noted silently.
"Alfred? No! I said, this is Matthieu!" Francis whined. "Though, he is Alfred baby brother
"O-Only by a year and a half!" The look alike added quickly, not liking being referred to as a baby. "But yeah
I'm Matthew. Nice to meet you, Lovino. Nice to see your again, Captain Antonio."
" Lovino muttered, still in slight confusion. Yes, he could see now. The boy looked a lot like Alfred, but his eyes were a rare violet color Romano hadn't seen before in eyes. His skin was slightly paler somehow, since he was obvious at sea all the time. His hair was longer and slightly wavy and he was shorter. "Matthew
"And to you, Mattie." The Spaniard replied with a grin, now sitting up beside the Italian. "But anyway, mi amigo, you really came all this way just to help me out?"
France smiled, though his blue eyes suddenly darkened, glancing at Lovino. "Sort of
The Frenchman moved the two wooden chairs that had been put in their room, setting them both facing the bed. "I'm afraid I have some bad news, mon ami." He assembled himself into one of the chairs, his underling in the other beside him.
Both men in the bed staring at the suddenly miserable looking two with curiosity.
"Well, France? What is it?" Spain urged impatiently.
The blonde took a long breath, his darkened sapphire eyes flowing over Antonio before sticking onto the small Italian.
"Well, mon ami, I know that Arthur is the one that brought this trouble onto you but
"Wait," the Spaniard stuttered. "D-Did you form an alliance with him?"
"No! As if I would align with that tasteless Englishman!"
"Shut up, idiot, and he can tell us!" Romano butted in, smacking the man beside him.
"Ah, yes. Anyway, I know Arthur has done this to you
I heard myself from the people of North Italy
France watched the small Italian flinch, knowing the bad news must be something about his younger brother.
"Yes, I was going there to meet with Feliciano like I do every few months. I had been told an English ship was spotted leaving by one of my crew members, but I thought little of it. They, though, had obviously not seen my ship." He took another deep breath. "I headed into the city with my crew, most of them running off to get supplies while a few, including Matthieu of course, came with me to that God-like place your brother calls home."
The Frenchman paused, envy making his face twist. But, soon, his features rested again into sadness. "When I made it, they were getting rid of a group of killed men in his home. Their blood was everywhere and as I inspected more, I noticed many of your brother's riches were gone and he wasn't in sight. When I asked what had happened, I was horrified."
"What! Did the kill Feliciano?" Lovino yelled in terror.
" Francis answered nippily. "No, they didn't kill him. That English ship, It had been Arthur's. He had gone to Northern Italy and taken your brother as a prisoner on his ship, killing anyone who got in his way and taking his most valuable items for himself."
Romano was trembling madly, his eyes wide with tears.
" Spain said quietly, putting a hand on his shoulder just to get it shaken off.
"Don't give me your bullshit! This is your damn fault!" Romano snapped, tears streaming down his face. "And you! Your brother helped that bastard take mine prisoner!" He glared at Matthew, who flinched with slight guilt.
"Lovi, calm down, it wasn't Mattie's fault!"
"I know, stupid Spaniard, it was yours and you know it!" The boy sobbed angrily, shoving the covers off his injured body. He heard Matthew gasp at the ugly sight of his burnt, black legs but he ignored it.
The Italian grumbled, cursing under his breath as he pulled himself forward more.
"Lovi! Be careful or you'll pull yourself off the be-Lovi!" The shocked Spaniard gasped, watching his underling pull himself off level so he fell, smacking onto the hared floor.
"Lovi! Are you okay?"
"Don't touch me, bastard!" He commanded quickly, his useless legs lugging limply behind him as he used his arms to move. He grabbed onto anything he could, pulling himself away from the others by dragging his lower half on the floor. Now, new tears form in his eyes, now from the immense pain his legs gave him.
"Lovino, wait don't-!"
"Shut up! I don't want to listen to you!"
"You can't even walk, Lovino!"
"Whose fault is that!"
Spain flinched, seeing the hurt glare the boy shot him. But suddenly, as he watched his underling crawl on the floor, the other two just staring, he clenched his teeth.
Spain stood, keeping most of the weight on his left leg. "I think not, Romano." He sneered, moving closer to the cursing boy and grabbing his collar. Soon, he jerked him up so that his feet barely touched the floor. He watched as the boy cried in pain for only a moment before he was tossed back onto the bed. "I told you not to move, South Italy. And the Captain will not be disobeyed." He told him sternly.
Antonio's green eyes dared the younger Italian to try something, but the fear had seeped through and the boy submitted back against the wall, pulling the covers over him again.
"I'm sorry, Francis, Mattie." Antonio sighed, sitting on the edge of the bed in front of them. "Please, go on."
The timid Canadian looked at the ground, but Francis nodded, knowing it was rare when his friend got aggressive, and this little Italian hadn't seen him at his worst.
"Thank you, Tonio. But actually, to what Lovino said about Matthew's brother helping our dear friend Arthur." He said, the last part with his smooth, sarcastic tone. "The towns people gathered some information by over hearing some of the English pirates as they rioted through the city. Apparently, Alfred hadn't helped raid the place."
"No? Well, he must've still been on ship. You know the boy is against all this kind of piracy and evil."
"Well, kind of
" Francis mumbled lowly, taking a moment to pause in thought. Then, his blue eyes looked back at his curious friend. "Alfred wasn't on the ship, he was in it. The lowest point where the prisoners are kept."
"He was taking care of a prisoner?"
he was one of the prisoners. Apparently even Arthur couldn't keep himself composed with his love for the boy after snapping with anger and he's back to his old self again. Surely you must have noticed that ever since Arthur saved Alfred and took him into his crew that the Englishman had been more merciful. Almost like that American had tamed him like some wild beast. But now, Al's stuck in a cage, probably with Feliciano, and Arthur is back into the wild once more and it's not taking him long to wreak havoc, it seems."
~~~~~ Kirkland Ship ~~~~
Alfred couldn't take it. The whiney sobs coming from the curled up Italian shivering in the corner was scorching his ears and tearing his hurt heart. How could Arthur do something like this?
Sure, Alfred had heard the stories of the horrible things of what the pirate Englishman had done before he was part of the crew. But he'd never actually seen him do it before. He felt tears build up in his own eyes, staring irritably at the floor.
How could a valiant hero
love a vulgar pirate this much?
"We're going to die
" Alfred's head shot up, staring at the crying boy on the other side of the cage. "We are going to die, aren't we?"
"No, we won't. You won't be hurt, Feliciano." Alfred replied back, trying his best to comfort him. Though he was sure his confinement was temporary, he was worried about Arthur's plans for Feliciano. "I'll make sure of it."
Captain Arthur had come and gone as the days passed, bringing his prisoners their one meal a day personally. He would stay and talk, usually with an irritable mocking tone. But one day, after the two boys sharing the cage had managed to become friends, Alfred was even able to lift the Italian's spirits, Arthur crushed them once more.
"Hurry up and eat, you two have got a long day ahead of you when we get to Turkey." The Englishman chuckled lowly.
"What?" The American questioned, sitting beside his newly found friend. "Why?"
England's grin turned upward more. "You, North Italy, shall have the privilege of being traded to the Turkish Empire where you'll be a private slave if you, Alfred, refuse the true taste of piracy like you should've long ago! Alfred, you are going to fight one of Turkey's most ruthless soldiers. He has killed many innocent people, so do not take him for granted. If you win the battle, I shall keep North Italy and he will become part of the crew. But if you lose, as I promised Sadiq, Italy will become his slave and he will take over North Italy." The Englishman laughed. "And trust me, Sadiq doesn't have the best record of being kindly to his slaves or territories."
Laughing nastily, the confident Englishman stood up once more and left the two stunned friends in their cage.
~~~~ That Night ~~~~
"Alright, Feli, it has to be around midnight by now, let's hurry and start our plan." Alfred whispered as if he'd be heard. He moved away from his friend to the door, starting to play with the lock holding them in.
"A-Are you sure this will work?" The Italian shivered fearfully.
Alfred grinned as the lock came undone in his hands. "It's the best chance we have to escape. I told you, I'm not going to let him hurt you and I won't fight."
Quietly, the American pushed open the cage door, grabbing his friend's hand and pulling him out with him. "Remember, stay quiet
" If Alfred had learned anything from Arthur and his crew while he was here, it was how to escape being arrested.
The light haired teen tightened his grip on the other's hand as he climbed up the case towards the deck. He pushed open the small door, peeking through the small crack he made. "It's clear, they're all asleep." He informed softly, pushing the door open the rest of the way. "Let's go."
He quickly led the smaller male to the other side of the deck, knowing a smaller boat was stashed under other things to camouflage it.
"Help me move this," he ordered quietly, the two of them pulling a large cloth off the little boat.
"Artie's smart, he knows how to be prepared
" But Alfred shook his head, realizing he was thinking folding of the Englishman at the wrong time.
Once it was uncovered, the two, though mostly Alfred since Feliciano could hardly lift the other end, carried the thing to the side of the ship.
"Grab food and fresh water out of those crates and put it into the boat," Feliciano was told quickly while the other strapped the boat to the proper ropes to be lowers down.
When they were done, Alfred sneaked off as Feliciano climbed into the boat.
"I'm back, I had to get this." He set a few maps, papers and a compass into the floor before climbing into the thing himself. "Now grab that rope and help me lower. If I'm right, we shouldn't be too far away from Greece if we left from North Italy and are headed toward Turkey. We just have to head north."
The two, Alfred tense and upset, Feliciano scared and uneasy, lowered the small boat onto the calm waves of the ocean.
Alfred grabbed two paddles, putting them into position before he started to move them away from the large pirate ship with the compass and map by his side.
"Alright, Feli. Let's get to Greece, we should be there in about two days if I'm right
we can get some help there, and no one will be able to hurt you."
Mon ami- my friend