“Easy. Easy, Luddy.”
Ludwig grunted as he painfully sat down on the couch. _____ looked sadly at his bloodied and bruised face, wanting to wipe the dried stream of blood that trailed down his chin. She quickly went to the kitchen and soon returned with a damp washcloth and a small white box. She set the box down on the couch beside Ludwig, and placed the washcloth gently on the German’s discolored and cut cheek. He flinched as it made contact, but slowly leaned into it.
“Hold that there for me, please?” _____ said softly.
Ludwig did as asked, and _____ began to pull off his shoes and socks. She then sat up on her knees and gingerly slipped off his shirt. He grimaced when his arms had to twist back slightly, but relaxed back into his seat. _____ stared momentarily at the bruises starting to form on his torso, but looked away and took back the washcloth and sorted through the white box. She extracted a bandage and placed it on the long cut on Ludwig’s cheek. _____ looked at his face. It was scrunched in pain––not like how it normally was, where he was only just irritated. He was in pain. The German experiencing pain was an extremely rare occurrence, and it scared _____.
Then she looked at his eyes. They were the only things that stayed completely the same. Her worry quickly vanished as she stared into the soft light blue. Her expression became saddened, and she looked away and sorted through the box again. “You. . .You didn’t have to do that. . .”
Ludwig let out a small sigh through his nose. “They were going to hurt you. I wouldn’t let them.”
“Yeah, but taking on six guys wasn’t exactly the best way to deal with that situation!” _____ retorted.
“Well, what was I supposed to do?!” he snapped. “Let them take you away so they could. . .” He stopped and pursed his lips, not daring to go on.
Hot tears pricked _____’s eyes, and she leaned her head forward and rested it on his shoulder. “You could’ve gotten killed,” she muttered.
Ludwig sighed again, moving his arms so that they lay on _____. “It’s alright, Liebes. It’s alright now.”
_____ looked up at him, then cupped his now bandaged cheek in her palm. She gently felt the bruised area with her fingertips, and Ludwig closed his eyes and leaned into the touch. She lifted her head and pressed her lips to his for a moment. “Thank you,” she whispered after pulling away.
Ludwig returned the kiss, stroking her hair and caressing her cheek. “Bitte, Liebes.” He held _____‘s lips carefully in his as he embraced her. “Ich liebe dich, _____. I’m glad you’re safe.”