Prologue

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I was sitting in my office when a knock came at the door. I looked up from my paperwork over my reading glasses, and called, "Come in" to whoever was on the other side of the door.

Naturally, it was a bubbly Italian who came bounding in, letting out an excited, giddy "Veh~!" as he giggled and rushed over to my desk. I barely had time to brace myself before he collided with my sitting body, attaching his thin arms around my much larger torso, trying for a short and desperate time to have his hands meet up around me before abandoning the effort and simply nuzzling his face into my chest contentedly.

"Ve~! Good morning, Germany!" he chirped happily, voice only slightly muffled against my jacket that his head was still rather comfortably buried in.

"G-good morning, Italien," I managed to mutter in return, the tips of my ears a little red. He giggled again noticing my blush, and proceeded to peck both of my cheeks in further greeting, smiling his big, dofus grin at my now-flushed cheeks as my blush only deepened and spread as I smiled back in embarrassed delight that I would never dare voice aloud.

Feliciano and I have been together - in secret, obviously - for several months now. And despite how comfortable he was with PDA (being Italian and all), I was still constantly on edge; whenever we touched, whenever we exchanged a look, whenever we were near each other: I was terrified of us being discovered. And while Feli didn't care, I knew the dangers. I knew them all too well. Italy and I had to be careful, because times were dangerous, and my boss would love an excuse to off more people close to him.

It was the start of 1942.

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