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High Tide

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“What the HELL was that?!” Ludwig’s voice filled the air thunderously.

As soon as the two German brothers had gotten home, they began to question their grandfather. He had said nothing so fair, just stared at Ludwig with undying disappointment. They had managed to bring him up to his office where they were solemnly allowed in. Ludwig tried not to remember the blood he had to work with when he was helping Feliciano, but the memories were too strong. His rage was boiling over with them. Something so similar could’ve happened with him if they hadn’t gone home so soon.

“Well,” Ludwig repeated. “Are you going to say nothing?”

Silence was his response.

“West,” The albino softly put a hand on his shoulder. He gently moved his brother away from their grandfather to a corner where they could talk a bit more freely. “He’s not going to say anything, you know that. Let’s just stop.”

“Nien, I have to know what he was doing!” Ludwig shrugged his hand off and glared at his brother. “Don’t you want to know?”

“Of course I do,” Gilbert muttered just as coldly. “But I also know that he won’t say shit. He never does anyway. Why should this time be any different?”

Ludwig glared at the attacker once more before glancing back to Gilbert. His feet were restless and he jumped back and forth on them. He opened his mouth to say something, stopped, shut it and hissed through a sharp breath.

“If you boys are done,” the elder voice sounded off. “I’m going to take my leave to my room for the night.”

“We are anything but done!” Ludwig snapped and marched forward. “Why the hell did you just attack him?!”

Their grandfather simply watched Ludwig simmer without blinking an eye. Without saying anything, he crossed the room with his footsteps sounding like guns shooting to Ludwig. The blonde was about to charge at him and demand once again for him to say something about his actions when he stopped.

Slowly he turned around and gave a cursory glance at the two brothers. “If you would like to know,” he gibed at them, “Then shut up and listen.”

After a moment’s pause, he turned back to the wall and pulled a book off a dusty shelf. “Back when your mother was alive, I was gone almost all the time like I am now. Neither of you boys know what I do when I leave, and for years I have kept it like that.” He flipped open the book and sighed with nostalgia. “You could call me a pirate, I guess. I would hunt for treasure, legendary articles worth millions,” he paused and glared at Ludwig. “And hunted merpeople.”

“You did what?” Gilbert cocked his head to the side. “As awesome as that sounds, I can’t believe that an old coot like yourself could manage to go up a flight of stairs. Let alone go fight with pirates!” He laughed a bit but stopped abruptly when he saw the glares he was receiving.

“It is true. Why do you think we are so rich?”

Neither of the brothers answered.

“I’m damn good at what I do. I killed hundreds of merpeople, until they figured out that they should be scared of humans. I bet yours was terrified when it first saw you,” he smirked at Ludwig. “But I haven’t seen them for years. The last I saw was when your parents were alive. They were beautiful creatures. They had twins in the water that were crying to them,” He smiled and gave a deep breath of pride. “I always dream of them. Their blood running down deck,” he chuckled.

"You monster," Ludwig muttered. It was quiet enough his grandfather couldn't hear exactly what he had said, but glared nontheless.

“But that stopped. Ten, fifteen, years pass without any sign. What was I suppose to do when I saw that blue thing swimming in my own house?”

“Leave it the hell alone,” Ludwig suggested mockingly. “He is-”

“You’re screwing with it aren’t you,” He cut in. “That fish and you are together, ain’t ya?”

Ludwig said nothing.

The two of them simply glared at one another for what seemed like a year. Neither of them moved in the year that passed. They seemed to age a year with their hatred instantly burning the air in the room. Gilbert was siding with his brother on this one. The man was family, but a murderer. And he had tried to kill his little brother’s light in the world. Nobody would get away with that, nobody in the world would dare to do such an act. Ludwig felt the severed connection between the brothers and their elder almost immediately throughout the time that passed and they were never going to be the same again. Two against one. It was a civil war internally during the twelve months and it was about to be externally.

The year that changed them happened in almost ten seconds.

Their grandfather scoffed at them. “You boys are crazy,” he shook his head. “Just like your parents were,” he left the room and slammed the door closed.

 

The next day, Ludwig had traveled the mile from their house to the beach. It was a very cold day and the water was no exception. Instead of the brilliant blue it usually was, it was a dull grey. No birds were out and all the other animals that usually were at the beach were hidden as well. The salt was only a faint scent on the air, mostly it was freezing cold and clusters of water drops.

Ludwig hated it.

He hadn’t brought anything to keep him warm, and his knees were knocking together as a consequence. The only good thing about it was that he was positive that nobody would be on their boats today, it was too freezing outside.

Trying to blink the damp air, the fog from his breath, and not be frozen altogether, his eyes scanned the ocean for his strange lover. For a few minutes, he simply stood there, but now he could barely stand still without something being frozen. Ludwig began to pace around to warm his frozen body. It wasn’t working very well, but it was better than nothing at all. Not only that, but he was trying to avoid the ocean water that managed to climb up the sand.

“This is insane.” He darkly muttered. “Feli,” he called out. “Feliciano, it’s cold! Are you coming?”

No answer.

He cursed and began to get the temptation of leaving. Really, the thought of being inside and warm had set his heart aflame and he wanted nothing more than to do that. He could get into his bed, pull out a book, and read. Maybe his dogs would get up with him and warm his feet further.

“Luddy, wait!”

A smile spread out on his face. Out on the distance, he could just barely see Feliciano. He waved at Ludwig before disappearing under the water. It was only a few seconds afterwards that he jumped out of the water only feet from where Ludwig was.

“Sorry,” he shivered, “It’s so cold I didn’t think you were going to show up.”

“I was very tempted not to. I was about to go home actually to warm up.” He said with a ghost of a frown. At Feliciano’s fallen face, he smirked. “But nothing could warm me up like seeing you.”

Feli smiled and blushed only a touch under the skin. He jumped the rest of the way, knocking them both to the ground with Feli on top of Ludwig. He kissed the blonde on the lips and hugged him tightly. “Luddy,” He cooed. “I love you!”

The blonde seemed to stutter for a second, blushed heavily, and quietly admitted his feelings for the attractive fish on his chest. The two laid there quietly and silently kissed each other in peace. Finally, it seemed as though that the world was content enough to let then have this moment of peace. The ocean's cold but calm waves created a soft spud in the distance that calmed them of any worries they ever had. The soft lips of the other made it feel like everything would forever be okay. Ludwig's strong muscles provided a hard, but comfortable pillow for Feliciano, along with simply surrounding him with both love and protection.

No, they didn't go further than kissing. Ludwig briefly wondered if they ever could consider such an act. Where would it go anyway? Besides, they didn't need sex to prove that they loved each other.

Once they broke apart, each had to take a quick breath of air. Feli rested his forehead on Ludwig's and smiled. His brown eyes blinked at the blue ones staring back at them. Whoever thought that brown eyes weren't romantic was crazy. Ludwig could easily describe them as the perfect shade of chocolate, the best tasting coffee in the world, the richest and softest earth ever dug up by man, the bark of the tallest tree in the world, the fur of the cuddliest teddy bear. The list could go on forever, but he didn't need to.

They were perfect.

Feli just wanted to have the chance to swim in the shade of Ludwig's eyes. He swore he had to die in order to have the privilege of doing so. Those eyes and the sandy hair framing the beautiful face, it was just one of the many, many things that made Feli love his human.

The two spent the entire afternoon like that. Kissing, hugging, it was all perfect. They eventually moved into the water for a bit, but Ludwig couldn't stand the cold water biting at his legs for a long time. Eventually he had enough and just walked along the rocks and listened to Feli blabber on about something. He couldn't really pay attention to what he was saying, the sound of his voice was too distracting.

Eventually the two had to say goodbye. It was getting very dark very fast. Especially with the way the clouds were dark already. Feli didn't want to hur Ludwig by having him stay, so he swam along the rocky line with him until they reached the shore. Their parting kiss lasted longer than it usually did when they were going to see each other the next day. A feeling of forboding set upon the two of them.

It went unsaid that they were timid to leave the other that night.

"Ich liebe dich, Feliciano. Forever," he added the last part with a smile that screamed that it was deeply in love.

"Ti amo, Ludwig." Feli sighed deeply. "I will see you tomorrow."

As Ludwig began to walk away, Feli noticed a familiar shape walk away. The feeling of horor began to grow uncomfortable as if something was about to strike his spine. He blinked quickly and turned to leave when he heard something. He gasped fearfully. The tears began to pick at his eyes, this wasn't okay. This was far from okay. He began to shake. He needed to go home now.

He really needed to go home now, he couldn't bare to be there any longer.