Needs to be done.
Brother Petros x Pope Alessandro XVIII
Fluff fic to the max, please enjoy responsibly

He had a divine mission, a task that he had been born for. To serve a man blessed by the Lord God in the highest way. A man more precious to the world than any other.

His duty and his own privilege lay in the life of Pope Alessandro XVIII

And of late what a task it had turned out to be.

Scouring the country for months at a time had been his lore, travelling to wherever he had travelled, Brother Petros and his Inquisition were vigilant and scrupulous in their work.
The usual gruesome mix of Methuselah, Albion and The New empire insurgents was as vicious and unceasing as it always was. Fight after bloody fight. Foes fell as leaves before the mighty arcs of his hammer.

He slept at night, content, knowing that God's will had been done.

For it was a small task to ask of a man so devoted to his holiness, such a small request. A fight never ending, it was one he was happy to wage holy war upon. It was what he was best at, a perfect warrior of absolute divine justice. Where he belonged was fighting against those who would sully the name of the Vatican and threaten the life of his holiness. Indirectly he protected that life everyday.

But now he was faced with protecting the actual physical body of all he had learnt to love about this world. The Pope was God's vessel on earth, a sign of peace and hope that he would go through any circle of hell to protect and he would be doing so himself.

For the Orden had come to change the world. The pox-ridden, so called 'enemy of the world' would threaten his holiness and would threaten the lives of every good fearing man, woman and child. Now there was a fight, on a scale worldwide, that even his own worthy adversary had fallen to.

What was a man to do, the inquisition was the strongest force the Vatican could throw and was an impenetrable wall against the invaders of peace and hope. Not even the Red Lady could compete with her AX.
But not even he had been able to stand up to fight against the Great War machines of the Orden.

It was a task destined to be impossible, for how could you hope to fight countless numbers of enemies that would not die when his hammer proclaimed them so?

But for that one boy, for his holiness Alessandro he would face the impossible, he would face thousands of these cloaked wraiths, unforeseen odds that lurked in unparalleled nightmare, hundred of war ships that could not be destroyed. Human and Methuselah alike would face them all, and without exception they would fall under the strength of his conviction, every single cursed one of them.
Because nothing would stop him from protecting the one he loved the most in the entire world.

His holiness, the glorious head of the Christian faith, the people's hope on earth, the Lord's closest follower, His servant, His mortal vassal. Every Inquisitor would lay down his or her life for his holiness, their love for him was unwavering and it was that man that needed him, Brother Petros, to protect him.

And he would, even if it would cost him his life. He would give it gladly, happily and with honour, every single time, without any doubt to cross his mind or his heart. For that was his duty to his holiness and that was his duty to a boy who asked him, a knight of the Vatican, for his protection.

'Brother Petros! Help me!' To hear the fear within that sweet voice, to see the terror lance through the usually placid expression. It sent dark coils about his heart that set a fire burning within him.

A sinking dread that he was in danger, a righteous fury that one might dare to harm his holiness, protectiveness, love?

He could not stand it.

That one so small and fragile could be the embodiment of all the worlds joy and hope… well you had only to look into that angel's face to believe the truth of it. Yet there were those cursed, festering, ungodly souls that would seek to destroy that and Brother Petros would crush them all gloriously under his hammer if they dare get close enough to try him.

Touching that sweet face, an honour no man should have yet it was his privilege to, on occasions increasing in number only recently, to do just such that in the name of comfort and encouragement.

His holiness Alessandro often needed such confidence to lead in the way that Brother Petros knew he could, and it was his fervent desire to see his holiness become as great a man as he knew the boy could be.

But the tears of fear and frustration still flowed and the small shoulders shook and the slim fingers dug into ruby red cloth as events became too much for him. He was only young, how could he, Petros, an honour bound Knight of the Vatican inquisitorial squad not stand there with him, sharing strength, encouraging resolve, lend a shoulder and a pair of strong arms to wrap around that small frame?

It was his duty to protect him from whatever troubles might arise. And no matter what his conscious would say, that this was his holiness and a mere knight could not get so close. No matter how certain he was that it was not he that should have this honour, it turned to him and he ignored it and he held onto the boy ever tighter.

'Your holiness' he would say both chiding and soft and the eyes that could melt a barren heart would look up into his. Would he ever recover from a man as great as his holiness considering him worthy for such confidence, for such trust?

No, never.

He would protect him forever and always, no matter what the cost, not even the Orden would stand in his way. He would be vicious, he would be cruel, he would barge his way through anything, innocent or no, if it was to keep him safe, this he knew without a doubt. He said this all silently to him, so that his fears were resolved and his shaking would stop, but the arms would not let him go. Silently he would say all this, but the volume of his conviction would destroy eardrums on the far side of the planet.

He would tell of how his holiness was the vessel of God, that He had chosen his holiness because he was blessed above all others. He told of how his holiness could not forsake such trust and the devotion of his people by being so upset, by letting his emotions over come him. He would say all this smoothly, with the deadly righteous devotion that had made him a name to be feared across the globe.

It was that same resolution, that very same solid conviction, that sent a small heart soaring, feeling warm and protected.

And the boy would smile, sadly at first and then sweetly as he nodded and began to wipe the tears from his face. Brother Petros, his frown slipping for a brief moment would stare at his beloved holiness and thank the lord for his great luck that could have brought him to this place.

He knew that, as the boy turned his back and walked away, his head held a little higher than before, that he would be back, crying and scared and that again he would comfort him.

But rather than feel slighted that his holiness was not as strong as he, himself, was strong, he felt a small smile lift the corner of his usually stern mouth.

A voice in his head told him not to, that to devote even his heart to the protection of his holiness was sheerest folly, but that was what all the Inquisition captains had done before him. Immersing themselves unceasingly to their cause and never stopping. Maybe he, with such weakness in his soul, was taking it just that one step further. His love was boundless.

The love of man who didn't realize he was already in over his head and probably wouldn't realize it until it was far, far too late. Not all men see as clearly as they think they can and while Brother Petros battled daily with his feelings over his duty there had come within him an acceptance that bonded the two. His devotion became fierce and he would smile quite horrifically.

His holiness, the precious star of the Vatican, his guiding light… There was no way that anything would harm his holiness while Brother Petros was around, of that there could be no other greater truth.

He would resolve then never to grow old, never to become weak and never to die, lest his holiness be left alone and in danger. For who else could protect him so diligently and with such thoughtlessness to their own safety?

"Brother Petros…" he would frown and walk on into battle because he was needed by someone greater than his own life.

"Don't leave me…" he would remember that one life and think it greater than the lives of his comrades.

"I, I lo-" and that voice that told him that in return and in the same strange mix of convention versus feelings, that he was loved by a man that, to him, was even greater than god.

Thanks for reading chaps xxx