Home of the Brave
:Soldier! America x Soldier! Reader:
You looked up from your steaming mug of (your favorite warm drink) to meet the eyes of the man sitting next to you.
"I was thinking that once this war is over... can we...settle down...?" You smiled gently to yourself as you caught the flustered look on his face and looked back down at the hot liquid in your mug.
"...That would sound lovely, Alfred." You murmured softly.
"R-Really...? Do you mean that?" You blushed slightly and nodded.
"But promise me that you'll keep this to yourself. The men will think wrong thoughts." The grin on the blond man stretched widely across his face and you playfully nudged at his side with your elbow.
"Whatever you say, (Male Name)."
That's right. You were a disguised nineteen year old soldier you went by as (Male Name). Being the rebellious girl you are, you didn't quite accept the roles of women during this period of time so that led you to disguise yourself as a male and sign up for the army. Of course, you received many odd looks from the other soldiers around you but gradually, they have begun to accept you. Alfred was just another outgoing, enthusiastic soldier who had immediately accepted you as soon as you set foot onto the camp.
Though you were able to fool him as well as the other men in the camp for a good two years, oblivious Alfred, of all men, had somehow found out about your true identity as a female and by your actual name, (Name). Since then, he had sworn not to reveal your true identity to the camp (actually, you threatened him that you would pellet him with a plate of stale biscuits if he told) and the two of you bonded almost instantly.
And as the war continued on, you were able to spend a lot of time with Alfred, both in and out of the battlefield. Soon, you came to realize that the oblivious Alfred you knew was more than you would have expected. He was a man of a well-built figure, had an impressive skill of strength and a charismatic smile. In short, he was a man of optimism and that only made you fall for the man you never thought possible.
However, considering your situation at the moment, it was impossible to let the occasional urges to display affection become known around the other soldiers as they would cause quite a commotion. Aside from all this, Alfred knew your feelings and fortunately felt the same way about you. And it was on rare occasions that the two of you would secretly share a kiss.
Ah, the life of a disguised soldier is not easy!
Snow was falling by the time your team (which consisted of Alfred, of course!) was assigned to gather behind the trenches to take offense against the enemy. Hours into the battle, you fired your musket and immediately ducked beneath the trench to start reloading; it was something that every soldier here were trained to do. But to be honest, the entire process was so tedious and annoying to you! The cartridges and the gunpowder had to be replaced constantly as soon as you fired off a limited round of bullets that you wondered if weaponry was your nation's biggest disadvantage.
Alfred had just as much trouble as you did; the two of you were always side to side in combat, spewing out various curses about the weaponry you two had to use. However, that was the most fun you have ever got from him. You've admitted that it was rather rare for someone to have fun while being solemn about the perilous battle but with Alfred...well, he changed the way you looked at the world. Alfred was always making some witty joke about the enemy while firing off another round of shots while you duck down and reload.
That was what the two of you did in every moment you've been together but today, the blond man seemed to talk less to you. While you let your dirtied back slide down the trench so that you can reload, you contemplated on whether it was because of the agreement made about settling down or because he got sick of the war. Hell, the war lasted over two years and it still doesn't look as if it was going to end anytime soon! And to be honest, you were actually getting tired of the war itself.
You were tired of fighting. You were tired of disguising as a man and talk as if you were one. You just wanted to return back to being a woman again so that you can show Alfred what you're really worth. Just imagine how much you yearned to start a family with the man you love!
Finally you finished reloading (it took a bit of effort as your fingers were frozen to the point of being numb) and positioned yourself to shoot while the blond silently reloaded his musket. You glanced at him through the corner of your eye while shivering from the cold and firing off more bullets.
"Al... Look at how that guy flies from the explosives we detonated. He looks like a chicken attempting to fly." You grinned slightly at your joke and expected half-heartedly for the man to start laughing like he always did. But today, he didn't even crack a smile. In fact, he looked as if he was frozen in the snow.
You glanced at him again and sighed before you put down your musket and ducked down to crawl over to him.
The blond man seemed to take notice of you but didn't give you any sign of acknowledgement on his face. Although you were freezing cold, you grabbed onto his hands and held them between yours.
"Al..." You repeated his name. "What's wrong...?"
You gazed into his cloudy blue eyes with your (e/c) ones and tilted your head slightly to the side. The blond averted his eyes to the side to avoid looking into yours and suddenly drew out a sigh.
"... (Name), I'm so tired of fighting...I want to stop." Now even as you expected his words, you were still taken aback by his solemn expression. Alfred, the most patriotic and proud citizen of his nation...was thinking of backing down?
"(Name)," He repeated, staring into your eyes with desperation. "I don't want to do this anymore...! Let's go and run away! They won't pay attention! They can pronounce us dead if we're missing on the battlefield! Let's go, (Name)!"
You continued to gape at him as he helplessly tugged at your hands to urge you to rise and make a run for it together...but you didn't comply with his suggestion. You really wanted to do so...but that was not the reason for wanting to join the war.
No, you are (Name), a woman who was sick of a society that degraded women as frail beings. You are (Name) who dressed up as a man to fight in a battle alongside the counterpart of dominance. You are (Name) who did these things because you were not fragile and useless. Rather, you did all this because you were brave for yourself and your nation.
And now, it seemed that you were dominant in your behavior because you shoved a musket into Alfred's arms instead of taking his hands. And amidst all the ear-deafening explosions, you yelled encouraging words of patriotism, bravery, and optimism in a way that it stunned the blond man and had him regain his pride and glory.
You then pressed your lips against his passionately and for once, you didn't care about what other soldiers would think. Because even though that early display of dominance came from the mouth of (Male Name), your love and passion was true and came from the (Name) within. Finally, the two of you withdrew for air and exchanged laughs.
"...Thank you, (Name)." Alfred smiled as he pressed his forehead against yours adoringly. "Thank you for showing me how much I love my country. I love you so much, (Name). I just hope the war ends so that we can get married and start a family together."
You couldn't help but smile at his words and helped him up carefully while supporting the heavy musket with your other hand.
"Alfred... I hope so too."
The two of you then resumed your fighting and alternating while the cannons blew ear-deafening shots and the bombs whistled in the air. You finished reloading your weapon and stood up, aiming your musket towards the enemy.
As you aimed, you couldn't help but notice a small flicker of orange light from the distance. Then you saw it.
The enemy's cannon fired and something went whistling into the air. It sounded odd, you thought. It was as if the whistling was louder than usual and you removed your eyes from the musket and raised them up into the grey sky.
The bomb is heading towards Alfred and he was clearly unaware of it.
Instinctively, you shrieked his name, dropped your gun and threw yourself over to push your lover away from the bomb's range before it hit the ground and detonated. The soil around you exploded upon impact and you were acutely aware of the sharp pain shooting through your system as your vision started to blur and spot.
"-(ame)? (NAME)!" You collect your bearings for a bit to see a faint outline of the blond man wrapping his arms around you. He was shaking your lithe body to and fro as if he was trying to get you to snap awake. "...Oh God... (NAME), STAY WITH ME. STAY WITH ME, GOD DAMMIT!"
You simply smiled faintly as your body waned from the coldness. The corner in your field of vision was slowly starting to blacken and you could hear Alfred's desperate voice start to diminish; the sounds of explosions and bombs were no longer audible to you.
"Al...Fred... Darling..." you breathed as you reached weakly to caress your lover's cheek, wincing at the pain blooming from your abdomen.
"Shh...Don't speak, darling." Alfred said shakily, tears flowing down his cheeks as he hugged your cold and bleeding body close to him. "You're going to be okay, (Name). The paramedics will come and fix you up. So please...try to hold on for me...don't leave me alone, (Name) because, you're my hero."
"My...darling Al... I...promise...not to leave...y-" Before you could finish the sentence, everything in your vision blurred away into nothingness and you felt yourself following the white light that suddenly enshrouded your entity.
~Three years later~
Alfred let out a sigh as he gazed out of the window and watched the bluebirds chirp out a cheerful tune from among the snow covered branches of an old oak tree. A hot mug of coffee was settled nicely on his lap as his hands wrapped themselves around the cup. The drink felt nice and warm around his freezing hands and the cold winter days looked much more bearable when he was inside his cozy home and sitting on his favorite recliner, observing the powder snow and icicles dangling from the windowsill. Yes, Alfred was enjoying the peace and quiet of the household before he shifted his attention to a woman approaching the room and smiled. He placed his mug on the nearby counter and immediately stood up, rushing over and helping the woman sit on the recliner.
"Thank you, darling." She spoke, smiling at her husband as she sank heavily against the recliner and breathed an air of relief. "The child has been kicking quite a bit recently...the doctor told me that he is very healthy."
"I'm glad," Alfred laughed softly as he placed his hand atop her swollen stomach and rubbed it gently. His wife smiled as the child inside her kicked in response to her husband's ministrations and craned her head over to give him a kiss. The man gave no hesitation in returning the saccharine display of affection to his beautiful wife- the woman he once met disguised as a man whom had saved him from a bombing accident, revealed her identity, got sent home with Alfred to recover, got awarded for her bravery, got honored as a hero and finally accepted his proposal to be his wife.
Alfred couldn't be any more comfortable with the way of how his life turned for him; the war ended five months into (Name)'s recovery and managed to hold an extravagant marriage ceremony eight months ago. And now, Alfred is soon to be a father to (Name)'s son in a couple more weeks.
Yes, Alfred couldn't be happier than he is now; after the war, he came to realize that(Name) was the one who understood his problems, struggles and sorrows. It was she who possessed a daring motive to serve her own country despite her restrictions as a female and...it was she who helped Alfred regain sense of his patriotism and ended up sacrificing her life to save his. This was why Alfred fell so madly in love with (Name) and now his wish is finally fulfilled.
As he waits for the time to pass by -every day, hour, minute and second-, Alfred awaits the moment to tell his to-be son about out how two soldiers met in the battlefield and went home as heroes.
After all, his son will be living as a hero when he grows up proud one day; he will grow in a place that he can -and will always- call, the Home of the Brave.