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 5: Bruises - Chairlift

Disclaimer: I do not own Axis Powers Hetalia

Summary: “Really, I have no idea how you managed to get into a bet with two ten year olds about headstands of all things.” “Actually, I think you’ll find we started out with handstands. They upped the stakes.”

Best Served Chilled [FF.NET]

England sighed, stuck somewhere between amused and exasperated. He supposed he shouldn’t be particularly surprised considering the company he was keeping though. “Really, I have no idea how you managed to get into a bet with two ten year olds about headstands of all things.”

He felt a slight rumble as his pillow chuckled. “Actually, I think you’ll find we started out with handstands. They upped the stakes.” There was a slight shift below him as Prussia settled himself in a more comfortable position. “Plus, you said to keep them entertained; they were suitably distracted, right?”

That they had been; the two children had seemed on the verge of tears when he and Prussia had stumbled across the pair. By the time England had returned with their parents in tow, the children had been giggling helplessly, their earlier distress already a distant memory.

It always amazed England how good Prussia was with kids; they didn’t exactly flock to him, but whenever placed in a situation with them, children seemed to love him within an instant (including, strangely enough, Sealand). One would think that with his love of discipline the former nation would be a strict mentor, or perhaps his fondness of brawls and fights would make him a bad role model. “It’s because you just turn into a big kid yourself,” England mused aloud, and to anyone else it would have sounded like a grumble.

It didn’t matter. Prussia could hear the gruff affection there, though he didn’t comment on it. He didn’t need to. Instead, he just laughed softly again, and Arthur could feel his breath tickle his neck.

“And why do you sound like you’re fifty? We’re supposedly in our twenties, right? That’s plenty young.” His fingers stroked through England’s hair absently, unconsciously, grinning as England turned slightly to appraise him.

“Yes, but I’ve been in my twenties for-”

“How many of those years have you actually acted that young?”

That certainly gave him pause, just as Prussia had known it would. He was smirking knowingly in triumph, and England had to keep in a harrumph of protest to keep from pre-emptively proving himself wrong and acting like the old codger he was often accused of being. Nations weren’t given the luxury of having the sort of childhoods human parents often strived to give their children, often embroiled in wars and invasions from infancy with famine and floods alike forcing them to mature far beyond the years of any human who was the age their appearance told of. While no one could say that Prussia had led an entirely happy existence, no one would ever accuse him of acting like an old man.

That smirk was growing wider with every passing second; as though Prussia’s point was being proven with every second England had to take thinking of a retort. And then it struck him. “I think you’ll find that I played a major part in the Punk Rock movement. I don’t think that was something you’d find the elderly participating in.” He gave a delicate sniff, just catching sight of Prussia rolling his eyes.
What? That was a perfectly good example!

But not good enough, apparently. “England. It took you that long to come up with just one time? And anyway, one, the whole punk thing wasn’t exclusive to you. Two, that was something you did as a nation. When was the last time you did something for yourself?”
He wasn’t sure how to respond to that at all as he hadn’t an answer for the other. Instead, he turned to eye Prussia’s make-shift ice pack. “At least I don’t bodily harm myself for the sake of ‘acting my age’.”

Because although Prussia had managed to perform a handstand with aplomb despite it being his first attempt, his try at a headstand had not ended quite as well. He’d lost his balance and earned a scrape on the knee through jeans which certainly had not had a hole through them that morning.

Prussia just shrugged nonchalantly below him, and England had to resettle himself on Prussia’s chest due to the movement. “Be thankful that family had some strawberries left, or your knee would be much sorer than it is at the moment. And be more thankful still that strawberries and cream are tradition at Wimbledon or they wouldn’t have had any.”

Prussia had lost his balance as England had approached, and after an almost tearful reunion the children’s parents had offered Prussia the last of their chilled strawberries to ice his knees with; the children had used their icepacks to cool themselves earlier during the day, but the strawberries still hadn’t completely defrosted yet. Prussia had dubiously accepted them, and now the reddish hue of the strawberries stained his skin just as the small bruise did.

“…I bet you couldn’t even do a handstand.”

England just stared at Prussia in disbelief for a moment. Had he really just asked that? “I don’t really see why I would want to, Prussia.”

“So you can’t.”

That smirk was back on Prussia’s lips again, and that just wouldn’t do. “I never said I couldn’t. I said I didn’t want to. You can’t goad me into doing something so silly.”

The thing was, he could; and they both knew it.

“And then you wonder why everyone calls you an old man; here I am trying to prove everyone wrong, but you just won’t co-operate…” Prussia gave him a look that was probably supposed to be rueful, but ended up looking devious. It was a similar look to the one he’d had just before commenting on the noises that tennis players tended to emit when making shots. England had been scandalised for all of five minutes worrying that someone may have heard the crude remark, but couldn’t help but find it amusing. “Even France can do handstands; he’s older than you.”

England grumbled under his breath for a moment, and Prussia was sure he heard something about not holding himself to standards set by ‘Shitbeard’, but it ended in a resigned sort of sigh of “Alright, alright. Fine. I’m still not sure this constitutes as acting my age though.”

As he climbed to his feet, England glanced around self-consciously; it was evening and most people who would have been in the area for the tennis had already left with only a few stragglers like themselves still at King George’s Park, but one could never be too sure. Prussia had sat heaved himself up so that he was sat cross-legged, strawberries held to his knee in one hand, the other holding his chin up with his elbow resting on his uninjured knee. There was challenge in his eyes – and as much as England denied it, he was childish enough to be goaded into a challenge without much trouble.

Getting to his knees and finding a stable patch of grass, he placed his hands down to ground himself. It took a couple of attempts, but he managed to push his feet off the ground, balancing them precariously in the air. Tucking his chin in so that he could see Prussia, albeit upside down, he saw the other smiling at him with the sort of expression he usually only treated his little bird to (when he noticed it was nearby).
England stared at it a moment too long, for the next thing he knew he was tumbling to the ground knees just about bracing himself on the grass as Prussia cushioned his top half.

“Urgh, these stains will be such a pain to get rid of!”

Prussia just stared at him for a moment before bursting into laughter. It was true; the white polo shirt and tennis shorts he had worn had a few green streaks on them now, and would indeed be a pain to clean… Still, the ridiculousness of his statement considering what they’d been discussing caught up to him too, and soon he was chuckling as well. They were a tangle of limbs, with neither of them feeling particularly inclined to move and content to just lay there and enjoy the abating heat. There was a moment of silence, before Prussia spoke. “The strawberries are still cold; need ‘em for your knees Kaninchen? Mine’re numb now and I’ve had worse.”
England’s nose wrinkled at the nickname. “Are you saying I haven’t?” He asked, mock-affronted. “I’m quite alright, thank you.”

There was another slight pause, Prussia eyeing the fully defrosted strawberries with a slight grin. “…Strawberries and cream are supposed to be an aphrodisiac aren’t they? I already taste like strawberries and cream won’t be too hard to come by considering where we are…”

He received a smack for his trouble, but it was a half-hearted one at best.
Prussia counted it as a victory.


A/N: This one was a lot of fun to write ^^ I think it was fairly self-explanatory but if you want to ask anything about it, go right ahead~

I'm not actually going to get to watch any of the Wimbledon this year, unfortunately, since I'm stuck here till mid-July... I'm planning to go back home for a weekend before I move out though (I'm actually feeling a bit homesick, would you believe? ^^'), so I may manage to catch the finals. Fingers crossed!


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February 2012

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