“When she looks at me
I feel myself getting weak in the knees
And my voice quivers and my heart shivers
Cause she makes me see
She makes me see, the real me”, She’s a Mystery, John Mayer
Her mouth gaped. That just wasn’t possible.
-How do you know me?
The storm roared outside, intensifying the awkward silence that slowly crawled between them, as [f/n] tried to come up with something that made sense in the absurd situation. It just… Didn’t sound real. At all.
Well, maybe I went crazy. For good. Well, that on the other hand, seemed far more believable. She examined once more the face she’d yearn to dream with every single night. It was him, no doubt. Germany. Her Germany. But…
-That… Doesn’t make sense. – She blinked again, somehow expecting him to vanish in the air and just retreat once more to her hyperactive imagination, but at the same time hoping so badly that he wouldn’t.
Nope, still there. She made a mental note to check if she was dreaming later. Maybe hit her head against the wall. If the right amount of blood went out, some sense should go in, right? Right???
Ludwig started to look a bit annoyed.
-I should be the one saying that, fraulein…?
She stood up properly, offering her hand for him to shake.
-[f/n], [f/n] [l/n]. –He shook it, almost smashing her fingers under his iron like grip.
-Beidshmidt. – She completed for him without even realizing what she was doing.
It was a little too much for her. As politely as she could, she asked him if she could have a few moments for herself, leaving him on the room. She wandered around the house, thinking about what to do. [f/n] noticed a huge box in the living room that she hadn’t seen in her (quick) previous examination. Along with it, there were a big suitcase, and some papers, one of them having her brother’s handwrite on it. She decided to read it first.
“Hey, kiddo, having fun with the worms and little plants of yours? Well, this ridiculously big package came for you when you were out and I was kind enough to open. Brother of the year, huh? Yes, I know, you should give me a prize for my generosity.”
Generosity? What about curiosity? And federal crime? How that sounded? Privacy, why are you so distant? She sighed, the anger making her blood boil.
“So,” The note continued “I discovered that German boy you always swoon about inside and nearly flipped out. It gave me the scare of my life, so you owe me one, are you listening?” Who owes you anything? She grumbled in her mind, rubbing her temples. “I left it by the door, so you figure what to do with the family sized toy. [b/n]”
So he was the reason why she nearly had a heart attack that day. Why wasn’t she surprised? She saw it had a post scriptum.
“P.S.: Your friend is crazy.”
She scratched her head, confused. Her friend?
“I’m dying to know what you’ll think.” The message from Aranel popped on her mind.
In one of the other papers there was a phone number, along with the name Aranel/Clara and the phrase ‘Call me.’
With her hands shaking, she dialed the number written hastily, cringing with the thought of how her father would react when he saw the phone bill. Oh, well, it wasn’t as if she was glued onto it every time she could, so may-. No, he’d still be very mad. Her subconscious affirmed and she agreed. The waiting was nerve racking, and it ringed several times, taking so long she wondered if nobody would pick up, until she heard a very sleepy feminine voice.
-Alô? – [f/n] started to panic. What if she didn’t dial the right numbers and it was some random Brazilian girl talking with her? Or Aranel didn’t speak English, and then what? [f/n] didn’t know anything about Portuguese. –Tem alguém aí?
She tried to say something, but only stutters came out.
Breath. She told herself. She’s your friend, you’ll work it out.
[f/n] cleared her throat, gaining a few seconds.
-Hi… I’m [f/n]… Hm, [dd/n]? Are you Aranel? – She heard a few coughs on the other side of the line.
-Oh, hi, [dd/n]. – The girl sounded a little more awoke now. –I suppose you received your birthday present?
-Actually, yes. – [f/n] was relieved to talk with somebody that seemed to actually know what was going on, but still felt a little guilty, so she asked: -And, I’m sorry, did I wake you?
-Yeah. It’s a little past midnight here. – The girl felt her eyes go wide.
-Oh, Lord, I’m so sorry! – [f/n] just wanted to crawl inside a hole and hide there until the world had ended. The other didn’t seem angry, though.
-Don’t be. I’d do the exact same thing. And I did tell you to call, so you have done nothing wrong. – Aranel yawned, and she felt slightly embarrassed. –So, what do you think of him? Have you waked him up yet, or you called me first?
The girl thought about those blue eyes and the myriad of expressions she just wondered about and now she could read in them. Even in a situation that was very close to being between the devil and the deep sea (Ludwig probably found himself in a strange place, in the middle of a storm with a girl screaming. And he managed to be polite. How amazing was that?) he was still so very calm about it. A true soldier, indeed – and the love of her life too, but that shouldn’t be considered in the overall situation.
-Ludwig is… Perfect. More than I could ever imagine. I think I love him more than I did before. He’s just… As wonderful as I thought he was. – She choked on her own words, hastily confessing the feelings she usually kept for herself or for her friends online. But [f/n] obliged herself to go back to reality and answer. –And he is… Awake. Hm, Aranel?
-How is that possible?
Aranel took a deep breath.
-Okay, what you have in hands is one of the first prototypes of Hetalia Hetaloids.
[f/n] tilted her head to the side, confused.
-In a nutshell? An android. One that has every personality traits of the character he represents on the anime we both love so much. Let’s just say that I know a person that knows a person. And voilà, your birthday present. But… -She made a small pause. –There’s a catch.
Here it comes. He’ll shut down in a few weeks. I’ll have to give him back. He has a bug in his brain that turns him into a psychopath on the full moon. He shines under the sun. Or… Aranel voice called her back to the conversation.
-You’ll have to send me some feedback every once in a while about his functions and behavior in general for the catalogue the creators are making, before the Hetaloids are released on global scale, because we’re basically on beta test with them. –The girl explained. - Can you do it?
Her eyes went wide. That was it? Ludwig was hers? For good?
-Y-yeah, sure. I-I’ll do it. – She stuttered, trying to absorb enormity of the fact.
-Great! –Aranel retorted.
-Sunflower? – A soft voice asked and she recognized immediately, almost seeing the childish smile he always had, though the tone was the gentlest she ever thought he could sound.
-I’m coming, Vanya. – She told him, then went back talking to [f/n]. – Okay, this is my cue. I hope you like your present, [f/n].
-I love him! – [f/n] assured her.
She chuckled on the other side of the line, in a satisfied way.
-That’s good. Now go play with him. Shoo. – She frowned. The way Aranel spoke, she felt like a little child that was being told to play elsewhere. It annoyed her slightly, but it was also cute. –Make that German squirms a bit. God knows how adorable he is when he does that. Good luck!
-Read the manual.
The phone became mute, and she stared it a little for a few moments before putting it down.
Pages and more pages about the general functioning of her new Hetaloid (he could actually eat if he wanted, but run on solar energy. Water wasn’t a problem either, but he couldn’t be immerse on salty water, nor would tolerate well long term exposion to the element.), his general tastes and preferences, most of it being nothing new to her. But… There!
“How to use your Hetaloid.
6 - How to wake him up.
This Germanic piece can be woken up in several ways. However, there are a few already tested ones, the most effective being:
a) Ask him if he wants to train;
b) Invite him to eat wurst, or offer him a beer;
c) Imitate Italy and scream for him, asking to be saved;
She glanced away from the papers. Oh. Well, that explained everything. She dropped the manual on the sofa, along with the things that came along with Ludwig, walking back to her room. She found him reading a forgotten copy of Pride and Prejudice that she didn’t remember to have anymore.
[f/n] sat down with him, and while trying her best to not drool over how beautiful he was by just being in the same place with her, she exposed the situation, clarifying (even if that killed her on the inside) that he could leave if he wanted to. For the first time since she had seen him on her house, Ludwig smiled.
-Nein, I’ll stay. You’re a funny frau. I like you. – She blushed more than she ever imagined possible over those words.
-Thank you. – She managed to say, but her eyes refused to leave the so interesting details she discovered on her floor.
The rest of the evening went by in a quiet, yet confortable way. The single incident only happened when they were preparing to sleep. The storm, which had calmed down to a simple rain after a while, started to become noisier once more. [f/n] was drying her hair with a towel as she went back to her bedroom, when the power went out and the thunders began.
-Germany? – She called in a careful tone.
She heard something behind her, and [f/n] let out a loud screech, until a hand covered her mouth, trapping the fearful sound.
-Shhh… It’s alright, frau. – Ludwig whispered on her ears, and she felt herself being soothed out by his presence. –It’s only a storm.
They stood like that, until Germany felt she was calmer, only then releasing her. He guided her to her room, but just when he was about to leave, she grabbed his hand, shyly.
-Would you stay with me until I fall asleep? – She asked almost inaudibly.
It could be a trick of the light, but [f/n] thought he was flushed when he answered.
In the next morning, [f/n] found her fingers still intertwined with his, and Ludwig asleep in an awkward position next to the bed.
The girl grinned, taking a blond lock out of his forehead. She’d take that as a good signal.