Arthur woke up in his bed with a pounding in his head which was a lot worse than usual. Arthur sat up and blinked a few times to get used to the bright light shining through the window. Yup, he could feel his hangover coming now. Looking at the bed, he saw that Alfred wasn't with him in the bed. Then he remembered what happened last night.
"I guess I better check up on him," Arthur mumbled, climbing out of bed and throwing on a pair of jeans and a shirt before walking into the living room of their shared apartment. What he saw was his partner currently wrapped tightly in the shawl of the sofa. Arthur frowned. Alfred looked uncomfortable in his sleeping position, and he also had a soft frown etched on his face. Arthur didn't like seeing Alfred upset, so he decided to wake him up.
"Alfred, time to wake up," Arthur whispered softly as he gently shook Alfred's shoulder. Alfred woke up with a startle and looked around the room with wide eyes. Arthur quickly pecked him on the cheek.
"Don't worry, it's only me," Arthur hushed Alfred. This made Alfred calm down before Alfred suddenly remembered everything that had transpired the previous night. Alfred began to fidget and cast his eyes downwards so his eyes were focused on the sofa.
Arthur frowned; that was unlike Alfred.
"Is everything okay?" Arthur asked. Alfred seemed to contemplate the question before looking up at Arthur with a concerned look.
"Arthur, I think we need to have a little talk."
Arthur's eyebrows rose at this.
"Okay, what do you want to talk about?" Arthur set himself down next to Alfred and kept his eyes locked on him. Alfred turned to the side so he was facing the Brit.
"How much do remember of last night?" Alfred asked. Arthur scrunched his eyebrows as he tried to remember.
"I remember...waiting for a long time, waiting for you, I think?" Arthur hesitantly answered. Alfred bitterly smiled.
"Do you remember what happened when I came home?" There was silence for a few seconds as Arthur searched his memory.
"No...I don't seem to remember that part."
"Oh. I figured." There was another pause as Alfred began to twiddle his thumbs and removed his eyes from Arthur.
"Alfred. Come out and say what's on your mind, you'll feel better," Arthur began to rub his hand over Alfred's shoulders.
"Just hear me out. Arthur...I'm worried for you."
"Worried?" Arthur scoffed, "About what? I can look after myself!"
"No you can't! I'm seriously worried about you and your drinking issue!" Alfred finally explained. He took advantage of Arthur's confused look to continue. "Whenever we have a fight, you drink. Whenever you're upset by something, you drink. Whenever you're angry, you drink. God knows what you do when you spend time with your friends at night."
"I think you're over exaggerating here Alfred-"
"No, I'm not, and that upsets me Arthur! It really does!" Arthur stared into Alfred's eyes, seeing how they were so wide out of terror and dread, and how they were brimming with unshed tears. "Even if I am exaggerating, the fact that it still bothers me should make you stop. Please." Alfred's plead came out as a croak, for by that point Alfred was struggling to not cry. Arthur, feeling guilt rapidly spread throughout his chest, instantly clutched Alfred by the shoulders and pulled him in tight to his chest and stroked Alfred's hair.
"I'm sorry," Arthur whispered, "I'm sorry I ever made you feel like that. I really am." Not knowing what else to say, Arthur continued to stroke the American's hair until the heart-wrenching gasps for air quieted down to a few sniffles. Arthur pulled out a tissue from his packet and handed it to Alfred, who happily took it and quickly wiped his face before blowing his nose in it.
"Shit, I feel so weak for crying," Alfred awkwardly laughed as he rubbed a hand through his messy hair. Arthur only smiled.
"Don't be stupid. Crying is healthy. And I..I apologise for ever making you feel like that." Alfred just laughed.
"Not a problem, Artie! Now, let me go out and buy us some pancakes so we can pretend we never had an emotional moment, kay?" Alfred grinned. Arthur simply smiled and nodded.
"That sounds splendid."
"I'll be back soon!" Alfred fumbled inside his jacket pocket for a few seconds more than usual before pulling out his keys and clicking the door to the apartment before quickly shutting the door behind him.
"Hmm," Alfred hummed contentedly to himself as he made his way to the car. At this current rate, he could pick up their breakfast, take Arthur on a romantic walk through the centre of the park down by the lake and propose to him there.
It would be perfect.
Meanwhile, Arthur was still sitting on the sofa and had his face clutched in his hands. He had put on a brave face when Alfred was in the room with him. He didn't want his love to see how deep and how much the pain of hurting him hurt Arthur. It was too much to bear. Flashbacks of previous spats they had had with Arthur always reaching for a bottle to drink, nights spent crying in the bathroom with Alfred holding his hair back and stroking Arthur's back, the painful mornings of realisation. It was too much for Arthur and it was breaking him slowly.
"I'm sorry," Arthur mumbled, repeating it over and over as he slowly stood to his feet and made his way to the wine rack. "I'm so sorry."
Words couldn't describe his shame as he began to down a bottle of red wine in one go, but that shame slowly began to fade away and become a distant memory he couldn't remember. Now he felt better. The wine was helping him.
Arthur dizzily looked at the empty glass bottle and like a ton of bricks, realisation hit him. Arthur smashed the bottle against the wall out of rage and squatted down onto the floor and clutched his head.
Arthur needed help. He was just ashamed to admit this to Alfred.
Due to demand, this is going to be continued for a while. I don't think I updated in the way that many people wanted me to though...oops.