… North Italy~! Your darling Feliciano Vargas.
You were just madly in love with that sweetheart. It was as simple as that. And, you were not afraid to admit. He was bright, bubbly, and kind and gentle. Excitable, yes, and sometimes as thick as a brick depending on the situation, but you couldn’t hold it against him. He was too cute, and you could never stop smiling when you were around him.
You’d met him by chance in World War II, when you’d joined the Allies. They’d captured Italy at the time, and he’d been crying in the corner as France and England poked and slapped him repeatedly. You’d not much appreciated the treatment you received as being part of the Allies, as according to them, a woman wasn’t fit for war. Mostly just fit for them to play around with and baby as if she were nothing more than a helpless damsel in distress, which you certainly were not (and they eventually learned it, too, and because of your long-standing friendship with America, he was the unexpected first to defend your pride as someone strong and capable).
So, when they placed you in charge of watching Italy, you got talking with him. Well, he got talking to you. Mostly it was flirting and fawning over how beautiful you were, and he would do it very loudly. But as time wore on, you got to know him better, and you could talk to each other. Eventually you felt sorry for Italy, so, you let him go. Of course, you made it appear that he’d escaped somehow, while you were on your scheduled break. You stayed with the Allies, as you didn’t believe in the cause the Axis was fighting for, but you and Italy remained friends. You became friends with the Axis in general, really. They were good people at heart. But really, how could someone be truly bad, if they were loved so much by little Feliciano?
You’d also come to learn that Feli, while perhaps a lot of the time more prone to running away than standing and fighting, didn’t really like living known as someone who was cowardly, and being known as hardly anything but that made him insecure. He also wasn’t as much of a clueless idiot as other people thought he was. And what you loved most about him, was that he had always been there for you from the worst to the best moments you’d ever had.
Your phone ringing rudely ripped you from your happy memories, and you scowled till you saw the contact; Ludwig Beilschmidt, on video call. That just made you frown. Germany never called you unless it was for something very important, and you’d never been video called before by him, so you picked up, to be met with the rather distressed looking faces of Ludwig and Kiku.
“_______-san! There’s something wrong with Feli!” Kiku seemed to be looking at something you couldn’t see yet.
You frowned. “What? What’s the matter?”
“Feliciano is… Behaving more oddly than he ought to be,” He looked like he was trying to find the right words to say, which troubled you further. “He’s dancing around the kitchen, and singing.”
“But he does that when he’s cooking pasta. You know that,” You tilted your head to the side. “Why the hell are you video calling me?”
“Well, we figured it would be best if you saw it for yourself,” Kiku looked hesitant, and the screen flipped from their faces, to the visual of Feliciano dancing around the kitchen with a cat. He wasn’t cooking pasta. He was just dancing, and he was singing very loudly.
“~When the moon hits your eye like a big pizza pie
When the world seems to shine like you’ve had too much wine
Feliciano kept singing on and on, over and over again, dancing with the rather dizzy-looking cat, and his curl was bouncing around in the shape of a heart.
You felt a stringing sensation in your chest as you watched the scene, but beat it back to get a hold of yourself. “Okay, that’s a bit strange, but is there any cause of alarm?”
The screen flipped back to your favourite German’s face. “There is a cause for alarm when he’s not even uttered the word ‘pasta’ all day, or even reacted when we suggested that we have it for lunch.”
“THEN WHY DID YOU CALL ME INSTEAD OF TAKING HIM TO THE HOSPITAL?”
“________-san, please don’t yell!” Japan was starting to look like he was having a panic attack. “He’s not sick, Ludwig checked! Feli always listens to you, so could you please come here and find out what’s wrong with him?”
“Fiiiiiiiiiiiiiiine!” You groaned and turned your phone off. Of course, your heart was actually doing backflips inside your chest, but you couldn’t really shake off the horrible thought that the reason Feliciano was acting like he was, was because he actually was in love with someone. There was such a thing as being too happy about certain things.
You hurried your way to Ludwig’s house, and didn’t even have to knock on the door before your wrist was grabbed and you were dragged inside, and the door slammed shut behind you.
“H-Hey! Come on! Give me a break!” You protested as the buff blonde dragged you down the hall. It must’ve been serious; he wasn’t even yelling at you for leaving scuff marks on the perfectly polished floors with your shoes.
“No time. Get in there,” Germany pushed you into the kitchen forcefully. You barely even got to catch a glimpse of Kiku before the door slammed shut.
“~When the stars make you drool just like a pasta fazool
When you dance down the street with a cloud at your feet
You’re in love~!~”
Feliciano sang happily and kept dancing around you in circles. You were pleased to see he’d put down the poor cat he’d been holding before, but from the limp-looking fuzzy thing in the corner of the room, you could tell the cat was less than well after being spun around and around again.
“Feli?” You spoke quietly, in the hope that he’d actually hear you or at least greet you. But to your surprise, he came to an immediate halt right in front of you, and his eyes peeled open. And he looked… Serious.
“Do you know why I’m singing, ________?” He asked seriously.
Finally collecting your thoughts again, you could only stutter out your reply. “E-E-Erm… No?”
“It’s because I’m in love.”
You felt like someone dumped a bucket of ice water over your head. “Oh,” You choked out.
“And she’s so beautiful. She’s so smart, and funny, and bright, and she always cooks for me, and she never hits me when I go to sleep,” Italy’s face began to soften, and a whole new soft, warm smile bloomed on his features, a smile you’d never seen before.
“Oh,” You repeated lamely.
“And do you know who she is?”
Italy suddenly grabbed your hand and pulled you out of the kitchen and upstairs like a ragdoll. “Then let me show you what she looks like! I have a picture of us together!” He sounded so bubbly and happy, that you supposed that he didn’t really comprehend that he was breaking your heart into a million pieces, and then breaking those pieces over and over again.
When he pulled you into his room, you didn’t even lift your head to look at the picture wall he’d accumulated over the years. You didn’t want to see this mystery girl’s face.
“See! Look, look, look! Isn’t she so pretty?!”
“You’re not even looking! Looooook!”
“I did look. She looks nice.”
“No,” Feliciano’s voice changed abruptly. It almost seemed angry. You felt his hands clasp your head and jerk it up with surprising strength to look straight on at eyelevel with a picture that made your heart stop.
Inside the picture, was a picture of your birthday two years ago, when you’d had a food fight in your backyard. Feli was on the right, covered in red jelly, and to his right was a smiling girl, with stained clothes, and an upturned plate of spaghetti on her head.
You stared at the picture in bewilderment, blinking dumbly and making unintelligible noises as you tried desperately to grasp at your words.
“It’s you, _______.”
When you finally ripped your frozen gaze from the picture, you noticed how Feli was smiling like that again. So warmly, softly… Lovingly.
“You know, you’re the only one who never looked down at me at first,” He plucked a rose from the bouquet of flowers he kept decoratively by the window. “Even when we were at war, you were kind to me. You never beat me up or called me a coward, and you never left my side whenever I was upset… You even came over when I was having that nightmare that England was chasing me and you stayed with me till I fell asleep!” Feli grinned happily and put the rose behind your ear, his hand lingering on your hair.
“I was always a coward, so… I wanted to tell you that I love you, to at least prove to you that I’m not!” Feli smiled brightly, but something in his eyes told you that he was anything but confident in himself. He’d obviously been trying very hard to show you he wasn’t a coward.
You shook your head slowly and stroked his hair. “You have nothing to prove to me, Feliciano Vargas. Because you’re alright just the way you are.”
“B-But I’m such a wimp… And I’m weak…” Feli’s brave face melted away, and he began looking sad. You let out a long sigh and pulled him close to you, and embraced him in a tight hug.
“It never mattered to me, Feli, whether or not you were a big country that was strong and brave, or not at all. You’ve just always been my sweet little Italian. You’ve always been my best friend, and I’ve never once been afraid to admit that I loved you, for all you were worth,” You thought that he might be relieved, but instead, you were met with loud wailing.
“Wh-What?! Why are you crying, Feli?! Did I say something wrong?! Please don’t cry!”
“No, no, I-I’m just so happy!” You let out a yelp when the small Italian pushed you over and rubbed his face against yours like an excited cat. “I love you, I love you, ti amo, amore mia!”
You smiled ever so slightly, and ran a hand through his hair. “Anch’io, ti amo.”
“Yay~!” Feli cried, before leaping up and running out of the room. “LUDWIG, KIKU! IT WORKED! THE PLAN WORKED!” You blinked at the loud commotion, and when you pulled yourself up and poked your head out of the doorway, you were met with the visual of the German swinging poor Feli around, and Kiku trying in vain to quell the argument.
“You idiot! You just blew the whole plan!” Ludwig yelled at him. “_________ was not meant to know that we planned it! Stupid!”
Feli waved his arms, tears welling up in the corners of his eyes. “WAAA, _________, SAVE ME! LUDWIG’S SCARY! SAVE ME, SAVE ME!”
You shook your head with a small smile. Perhaps some things wouldn’t change, but that was okay. In fact, it was perfect. Even if you had to rescue that little Italian a thousand more times, you wouldn’t change it for anything.
And Feliciano, despite how much he hated the idea of being known as helpless, perhaps didn’t mind being rescued if he got to be held in your arms again.