You bit down on your lip. It took every ounce of your self control to keep yourself from losing it. The doctor patted your arm, explaining what had happened. You were barely listening. The only one thought circulated in your mind; This cannot be happening. This cannot be happening. With one final, sad glance, the doctor turned to leave. You lowered your head, your (_h/c_) hair hiding your face. The sterile, white walls of the hospital room did nothing to warm you. You felt hollow.
As soon as the door closed, you lowered your head farther, tears clinging to the corners of your (_e/c_) eyes. This was just... unreal. You felt so numb. Oh God, why?! Yo buried your head in your hands, sobbing. You muttered "Why, why, why?" over and over again, your tears flowing down your face and landing on your hands and jeans. You felt like your heart had been ripped out of your chest.
The steady "blip" of the heart monitor was the only other sound in the room. You couldn't even turn your head to look at the man in the hospital bed. You loved Gilbert Beilschmidt too much.
You managed to cast a teary glance at him. He had tubes running into his nose and an IV in his pale arm. You choked and started to sob again. You were faintly aware of the door opening before you found yourself cradled into the arms of Elizabeta Hedervary. The Hungarian cooed soflty to you, escorting you out of the room. You needed to stay with Gilbert, but she wouldn't listen to your sobs. She led you back to the lobby, rubbing soothing circles on your spine. Your cries had turned to sniffles and you wiped your eyes.
"I'm so sorry, (_Name_)," she said. You knew the two didn't get along, but this was more important. Eliza stroked your hair and tried to offer you a weak smile. "It's gonna be okay. You'll see."
You barely acknowledged her as she told you she was going to find the doctor and get the story. You sank down into a chair, weary and cold. You couldn't think. The world was coming crashing down on you and you were powerless to stop it. People came in the doors, complaining about ailments or toting flowers and family members to see someone. You just stared at the floor, ignoring the smiles and warm wishes from the people around you. You loved him. And now, he was lying unconsious in a hospital bed.
"(_Name_)? (_Name_), is zhat you?"
You looked up, recognizing the voice. Ludwig pushed past a man with a balloon and made his way toward you, worry and fear in his icy blue eyes. You felt yourself standing, but you didn't know how you had the strength. He was getting closer and, without even realizing it, you were pulling him into a hug, tears in your eyes again. He, to your surprise, hugged back. The two of you just stood there, locked in an embrace full of sorrow and regret.
He pulled away. Niether of you spoke, but you knew what he wanted. You led him down the hallways of the nausiatingly clean hospital. You opened the door and got your first good look at Gilbert.
His silvery hair was messier than ever. His face, pale as it is already, was still and placid. His lips were parted and cracked. He was so still and so unlike the loud, cocky East German man that you both knew. It hurt.
Ludwig crossed the room, and you followed, your mindless actions reminding you of a zombie. The younger brother just stared for a moment before reaching into his pocket. He pulled out an iron cross; Gilbert's iron cross. He placed it in his brother's hand, wrapping the chain around his wrist. You took your seat by the bed, lacing your fingers with his. Ludwig took the seat beside you, a determined spark in his eyes. You were going to wait it out by his bedside. You would be there when he woke up.
You rubbed your thumb along Gilbert's knuckles. He hadn't moved in you didn't know how long. Ludwig, the diligant soldier he was, had eventually fallen asleep in the chair. You galnced at the iron cross around the blond German's neck. You felt your free hand searching for your own, the one that Gilbert had given you for your birthday. The cool metal was comforting.
"Kollegin," you heard Ludwig whisper. "You need to sleep." He was right, you knew, but you couldn't.
"I'm going to get some coffee," he said, laying a hand on your shoulder. "Do you vant vun?" You nodded dryly and sighed. You heard footsteps and the sound of the door.
"Gil..." you murmered, closing your eyes. "I'm so sorry..." You heard a slight hitch in his steady breathing. He sighed, his eyelids flickering for a moment. You felt your heart leap, wondering if he was going to open his beautiful, ruby red eyes and smile at you. Nothing happened. You wiped at your eyes, turning to stand. You should be helping Ludwig get the coffee. You didn't see his fingers twitch.
Your wrist was suddenly grabbed. You spun around, staring at him in disbelief. He shook his head, blinking his eyes open. Gilbert turned his head toward you, a faint smile in his lips.
You dropped back into the chair, happiness overtaking you. You smiled for the first time in a long while. He smiled back, his normal enthusiasm returning quickly.
"Gil, I thought I had lost you!" you managed to gasp out.
"Kesesesesese~, you didn't zhink zhe awesome me vould go down zhat easily, did you?" his voice was feeble and it scared you a little to see the strong man so weak, but his smile and laugh were enough to calm your worries. He scrunched up his nose, the tubes the doctors had put in still in place. He raised his arm to try and figure out what was shoved into his nasal cavity, but stopped when he saw the iron cross dangling from his wrist. He looked at it for a moment, wondering how it got there.
"Vest..." he murmered, smiling again. Ludwig opened the door, two coffees in his hands. He stopped dead. The two brothers stared for a moment before Ludwig quickly deposited the cups on a table and ran to the opposite side of the bed. He hugged his bruder the best he could. Gilbert chuckled again.
"Vest, you've gone soft," he teased. Ludwig pulled away, his normally stern gaze returning to his face.
You giggled at their antics, a sign that everything was going to return to normal. You pecked Gilbert on the cheek, savoring the warm feeling you got from it. He turned and captured your lips in a quick kiss.
"(_Name_)?" he whispered.
"Help me get zhese zhings out of my nose."