Hide (Spain x Reader)Nowadays, he almost finds himself despising the sight of her face; the naive curl of her lips and the ways in which she’ll still make careful observances of his wearied condition, asking him where it all went wrong.Hide (Spain x Reader) by autumn--thunder
He has no idea of how to answer her whenever she should ask such questions, always murmured from her lips in the low, amiable note he’d once considered to be calming. In days gone by he may as well have taken her fingers loosely into his whenever the words slid from her lips, lingering in the searing heat of a July evening, and he’d look closely upon her in consideration of every crease of her brow and stitch of her clothing, without having to struggle to fathom every consonant and vowel, churning them through his head.
Maybe he would pull her lightly, gingerly forwards into an embrace of heavy lids and quivering fingers, his eyes a glinting presence in the light of the lamp, and she’d answer with the same cautious dip of the head
Alive (Ghost!Canada x Reader)Every month, there were ghosts in the trees.Alive (Ghost!Canada x Reader) by autumn--thunder
They were always there – watching and waiting with their large, probing eyes. Each spirit differed from the next through traits that appeared to vary from their often archaic clothing to the way their lips moved when they mimed inaudible, broken syllables, interrupted by ancient fears bubbling to the surface. Several seemed only to be terrified of a world they had forgotten, and existed in apprehension of reality itself and of a place they couldn’t leave, being attached to it by something far greater than an existence of flesh and blood. Others were excitable and always laughed in a strange sort of merriment and peculiar mirth (although, perhaps they had been already driven mad), looking on to the lively faces of the living and wringing their hands as if in want, curious in their demeanour and even more so in their actions.
No less, every one was impossible to understand, and even more so to believe.
It was every full moon that t
Death's Purity (Prince!Iceland x Reader)For many years, he was known only as the Cursed Prince.Death's Purity (Prince!Iceland x Reader) by autumn--thunder
Try as one might, it was difficult to get over the seemingly cliché tone behind the name. It was odd to the ear, and many people would shudder simply to hear it spoken in the darkness of lonely streets and homely cottages. What was the most peculiar about him, though, was that despite his name, he had odd tendencies; most nights of the week he could be seen on the streets, with a hood over his head and soft consolations on his tongue, often acting out his own small acts of philanthropy.
He was also said to be strange because of his apparent preoccupation with death and the life hereafter, enslaved to what appeared to be remorse and grief after the death of those near to him. Perhaps he had gone slightly mad, one might have presumed – although, it could not have been altogether surprising. He had lost his mother when he was young, his two brothers and sister before him having been stillborn and cold to the touch. His f
It's a frozen, peculiar sort of night.
Well, he believes it's night, anyhow. He's counted the hours meticulously in his head - sometimes the minutes - yet he's had to halt both his thinking and breathing so many times simply to stare at the stone wall and dare to wonder if there's still some part of him that's alive that he can hardly be certain.
It's lonely, too, come to think of it, doing little more than wasting away through the agonising years with cold fingers and an ageless face, standing by the cemetery gates and watching black coats and black years pass him by. But, then again, that element of his circumstance doesn't quite concern him as much as he may have once supposed it would - perhaps, instead, it's the thought of being trapped and constricted within frozen, solid walls. Maybe it's the idea that not even time itself makes sense in his head any longer, when every short day of living is inevitably identical to the rest, and aspiring thoughts of release have done nothing to assist the eradication of the spirits in his mind. The years feel like minutes, nowadays, stiffened by these God-forsaken winters.
Maybe it's the claustrophobia getting to him at last, pricking at his mind along with the numbing cold that makes this scene in some universe feel as strange and unreachable as it is. Perhaps it's the fear of going insane, and rotting here, only to be found as another unidentifiable body decades later when no living soul will recognise the faded grin and once sharp eyes of this masked cadaver, his image having been printed into crowded photo albums discarded into the fire.
It's impossible to tell, and the thought of that is painful. Almost too painful.
But it's a lie, he thinks to himself. It's just another goddamn lie. It's so hopelessly stupid.
He knows that he can't die here; he can't throw himself into the arms of Death and be embraced in the suffocating hold of uninterrupted sleep beneath blankets of dirt and rain. He'll never know the sensation of seeing one's own blood - dripping, gushing - only to have it fade to black moments after. It's incomprehensible, and it hurts. The chill and reality of it hurts.
But then, he wonders vaguely, maybe it's emotion. Is it all simply built from the fact that he has human feelings, emotion, and a mind of his own, rather than some sort of mindless, mechanical need to obey? Is it the fact that he still has a somewhat beating heart, and the fact that he can bother with someone else's life? Is it that desire for freedom that hurts the most, and remains as the one thing still dragging him back into the pit? Why has he listened to them all these years? Why has he gone over the orders for slaughter and even drawn his own sword when the time has been right, and the iron hot?
If he's honest to himself, the only thing he properly remembers and finds familiar, out of all the harrowing years spent in this prison, is the slight thrum of pain and the clouded tears in his eyes from all those years ago.
He'd been young and handsome, once. They'd all been young, once, before the tides of blood and metal buried them alive and snuffed out what hope they'd dared to cling to, and he'd stood idly by.
He remembers seeing them all fall around him and his heaving, uncontrollable breathing when he wept for them once the gunfire had faded and the others had gone to relish in their dreams of death on the following morning. It was hard to be sombre, in moments like those; it was hard to maintain his own image of himself and try to drown out the still persisting, yet nervous gunfire. But he was the one that had stood there before them and smiled in the hideousness of it all. And yet they'll never feel that. They can never realise, even now, how much it pains him to watch them crumble and clutch at torn skin, and they'll never realise how many tears he sheds on the snowy evenings when he's before the graves; the sea of white, with the hewn edges stained red by pitying flowers. It's impossible to feel the desolation in his frigid head when he traces countless names with pale, clumsy fingers and sighs with breaths of weighted smoke, throat tight.
He's told himself more times than he can remember that he can never dare to care for these souls. In truth, he should be used to it, used to ticking minutes of waiting in the dark for another to die. But he can never hold onto that promise. He'll always forget, he'll always be there. They are so painfully oblivious to how difficult it is when he allows himself to care. And it's never fair. It's hopelessly unjust. It's so fucking unfair, and he despises it. What reason has he to feel a sliver of regret? What reason does he possess that should push him to return night after night, trying to break away his sullen memories with the dull, soft settling of beer into his stomach? Why should he bother to feel remorse, when he should so clearly be thankful for the mere fact that he has a whole body, without the holes and gaping scars? He's killed enough in the past to have become accustomed. He knows what it's like to be ruthless, to hold a dagger to someone's throat and forget they're more than an animal. But here he is.
Why? He wants to scream. Why?
He realises with a start, a sudden jolt of the body and mind, that tonight, maybe in the coming hours or days, there'll be yet another victim of this looping, endless game. And she's there, right there, ignorant of the fact that she's more than likely standing in her own grave. Escape hasn't even crossed her mind once. She's still present, watching him with that careful, softened gaze and not blinking once to offer an idea that she has the same fear always eating at her mind. The fear of desertion.
He opens his eyes now, so slightly and in such a way that with his still composure, one could easily be forgiven for thinking he was yet another corpse, if not for how violently his body was shivering. He knows it's not the cool of the tunnels. He knows it's not the winter outside, or his white, ungloved hands.
It's the act of living, he silently concludes. It's the knowledge of that cycle; that that journey will always end in the same place. And above that it's the ache of knowing how little time is left. The writing is already on the wall, and no matter of shells, of scraping bayonets and knives against this slab of stone, can change what is certainly imminent.
Death will never end.
But she doesn't deserve to die, surely. It's impossible to think that a girl with enough heart to show a sliver of mercy to someone like him can deserve to lose her throat.
And yet, she isn't even on his side! It amuses him in some respect, that something can be so certain, even with the walls closing in on them from all sides. Her death could not bide well on anyone's territory, whether that was within sky or stone.
I'm an idiot. A fucking idiot. Why should I bother to care? His smile is bitter, twisted with the effort it takes to keep back his tears. It's hard enough merely accepting that the only reason he isn't truly, physically imprisoned is because of this girl, so trusted by the others. She was the one who found him in the night and unlocked his cell, rattled the key in the locks and took him by the hand, guiding him right into lonely, musty corridors that supposedly led to a world of dimmed sunlight, where living creatures couldn't be contained by borders.
A strange sort of mercy it had been.
But his thoughts drift once more and he grits his teeth, narrowing his eyes and clenching his hands until his knuckles are white. Yet, he still tries to hide his stiff hands, and tries to dismiss these ideas, tucking his fists into the warm creases of his jacket as he turns his head away. It stings, this feeling of loneliness, and of desolation, although part of him still fears to admit it. He's used to the soft pounding of it in his head, the relentless nature of it all, but when he knows someone nearby is on the very edge of death it rips at his conscience. And that is when things are the worst - worse than all the bodies. Worse than the state of the drains and the blood caked to his uniform, now peeling from his skin.
At last Gilbert slides his hands free, staring at them. They're filthy, covered with smeared dirt and dried blood. And then he's struggling to remember whose blood it is, whose gun has left the bullet wound in his side he's tried to forget when there's so little chance of laying aside the knowledge that it's one of a hundred things that keep him awake at night.
"Are you alright?"
The sound of something other than the chaos in his own head rips him from where he's imbedded thickly in his thoughts, but it's so sudden that for many moments he can't be certain if he's heard correctly, or whether it was little more than another sleepless dream. He blinks, slowly lifting his heavy head from his hands to find the girl's eyes firmly locked on his own.
His saviour, he corrects himself with a sidewards glance.
Perhaps it would be decent of him to look at her.
And then his grin is back, but there's so little of his heart in the smile that he need not have bothered at all.