Come home, fratello.
From otpprompts: “Imagine person A feeling suicidal because they feel that no one would even care if they died. Looking down from place that they intend to jump from, they decide to give the world a final chance to prove someone cares by dialing a random number on their phone. If no one answers, they will jump. The number they dial just so happens to be person B’s number. How person B reacts is up to you.”
Pairing: Itacest. (Italy x Romano)
Summary: Romano has had it with being compared to his younger brother Italy. Always the second choice when Italy wasn’t around. He decides to take matters into his own hands, but things don’t go the way he planned. They never do.
* * *
“It’s freezing tonight,” muttered Romano as he trudged up the hill. He wrapped his arms around his shivering body, teeth chattering as he made his way to the cliff. Though it was cold, the sky tonight was absolutely stunning; the moon was full, the stars shining like holes poked by a needle through a dark blue fabric.
What was he doing this late at night? Well, Romano planned on jumping from the cliff into the icy waters below. At the very least, the rocks would end him, and if not, he’d probably be knocked unconscious and drown. The Italian had a perfectly good reason to be doing this…or rather, he assumed he had a perfectly good reason.
“No one cares about me,” Romano told himself as he stopped at the edge of the cliff. “I’m worthless, petty, a bastardo to everyone. They all look to Italy for help and advice. I’m their last resort.” He repeated the words over and over, trying to calm his racing heart. But fear filled his stomach, causing him to go rigid. He needed another reason, a solid one from someone else. “…Fine! I’ll call someone. If they don’t answer me, they don’t care, and I’ll jump.”
Romano took out his phone, randomly choosing a number with his eyes on the rushing water below. The tone rang once, twice, and just as it rang a third time, someone picked up.
“Ciao, Italy speaking!” Romano’s eyes went wide. Oh, he had screwed up. “Hello?”
Romano stayed silent, hoping that Italy would just hang up. Why, oh why did he have to choose his brother’s number?
“Romano? Are you there? I have caller ID, silly, I can see you’re still on!” Romano let out a shaky sigh, gripping the phone.
“Fratello! Where are you? It’s lonely here and boring and I’m really hungry.” Romano smiled slightly at his younger brother’s voice. Always hungry, the idiota.
“Well, where I am isn’t really important. What is important is that I…I might not come back home.”
“Huh? Why? Is it the Mafia? Are they taking you again? Fratello, don’t let them take you again!” Romano covered his eyes, taking a deep breath to stop the tears from falling.
“No, no, it’s not them. It’s just…look, Italy, I’m really sorry. But you have Germany and Japan and everyone else to look after you. You’ll be okay. I’m sorry.”
“Romano? What are you trying to say?”
“I’m standing on a cliff right now, and I made a deal with myself that if I dialed a random number and no one answered, I would jump. And even though you answered, I still am.” The loud cry that Italy made did it for Romano. Tears streaked his face, and his hand shook from holding the phone too tightly.
“No! No, please don’t! Don’t, I’m begging you!”
“Italy, I’m sorry, but I’ve made up my mind. I can’t live being the second option for people who can’t find you. I’m worthless. Please understand.”
“Lovino, don’t do this!” Romano closed his eyes, tears still falling. His brother was upset, his brother was really upset if he had called him by his human name. It hurt Romano to hear Italy’s sobs, but it hurt worse knowing he had caused them. “Don’t leave me! You’re my big brother, I don’t want to be left alone again!”
“You’re not going to be left alone. You have the others.”
“I don’t want the others, I want my big brother! That’s all I want! You’re not worthless! Please, please don’t do this!” Romano opened his eyes, staring up at the beautiful night sky that just minutes ago he had found stunning. The stars that were once holes in fabric now reminded him of tears on a pillow, never to be wiped away.
“Feliciano,” whispered Romano. “Ti amo.”
“Come home, fratello,” whimpered Italy, his breaths hitching every few seconds. Romano only smiled and hung up, still staring at the sky.
He couldn’t do it. He couldn’t jump, knowing that he’d be leaving Italy behind. Even if he was worthless to others, even if people didn’t come to him first, as long as Romano was with his little brother, he could care less about the world. So, with love ablaze in his heart, Romano turn around and ran back to the car. One thing was for sure: He had no idea how he was going to make up for this to Italy.
Not long after, Romano pulled up at the pretty little two floor house. It was already three o'clock in the morning as he turned the engine off. Romano hoped that Italy was still home, asleep right now. He got out of the car and went up to the door, unlocking it and stepping in. Romano closed the door quietly, heading to the living room.
There, lying on the couch and clutching Romano’s tomato pillow, was Italy, fast asleep. Romano smiled and knelt down, pushing his brother’s hair away from his eyes. “Italy…Italy, wake up.”
The other Italian groaned softly, his eyes fluttering open. “…Romano?” Romano nodded, still smiling. Italy’s eyes widened, and he tackled his brother. “Fratello!” Romano fell backwards with a laugh as Italy held onto him tightly. “You’re okay, you’re home again!”
“Yeah, yeah, I’m home.” Romano sat up, holding onto Italy. “I’m sorry. I didn’t mean to hurt you like that. I was just upset and wasn’t really thinking of my actions-” Italy silenced the older Italian with a kiss.
“It’s okay, Lovi,” Italy said, his lips still on Romano’s. “You’re home again, and that’s what makes me happy.” Romano smiled, pressing his lips against Italy’s before speaking.
“Ti amo, Italy.”
“Ti amo, Romano…”
“I’ll take you out to eat tomorrow.”