[露中] Taming the Polar Bear - Chapter 21

Main Pairing: Rochu (Ivan x Yao) | Genre: School, Romance, Humour, Drama | Rating: PG-13

Characters: Rochu-centric with many side pairings, supporting characters and cameos from other nations

Synopsis: In Hetalia Gakuen, Ivan, a notorious school bully, meets & falls in love with Yao, a student councilor who resolves to tame him of his bullying ways. Hilarity, chaos & fluff ensue as Yao braves Ivan's romantic but perverted pursuit to take him into hand.

Disclaimer: The following story is a derivative work of APH and shares no relation to actual countries, political ideologies, history or events. Characters are copyright to Hidekaz Hiramuya, but the storyline and writing are copyright to me. You may share the link to my blog or blog post, but you may not repost my writings without my permission.

Chapter 21: The Trouble from the Counterfeit Kitty-chan

When Yao stormed back to his dormitory room which he shared with Xiang minutes after Ivan's lecherous assault, he felt his blood pressure rise up further when he saw his cousins and brother enjoying the gifts that had been the very reason for his anger.

Xiang perched on the edge of his single bed, his eyes following intently the powerful martial arts moves of Bruce Lee, occasionally punching his fist in the air and cheering him on. Kiku lay sprawled out on Yao's bed, playing his computer game. Yao noticed with a pang that he had not even bothered to remove his shoes. Yong Soo stood in front of his stereo set which was blasting Korean pop music, mimicking a jelly fish lumbering around in water, although he was in fact, trying to dance a Rain number.

"Hello aniki, back so soon? We weren't expecting you until midnight at least," Yong Soo greeted him cheerfully, having been the only one who spotted him since the stereo set was right in front of the door.

Midnight eh? Yao seethed. So this was indeed a conspiracy to get him into the perverted polar bear's bed. The ingrates. To think that he had been as kind to them as a parent would. Never before now had he found Yong Soo's silly grin and shaking butt so repulsive. Before he realized what he was doing, he had grabbed a pillow and was smacking Yong Soo all over with it at every spot that he could reach.

"Ingrates! Traitors! Beasts! I treated you like my own flesh and blood and you betrayed me for your own superficial interests! Grandpa would turn in his grave if he could see what disappointments you are!" Yao raged as he rained powerful blows on Yong Soo, his slender arms exhibiting a surprising amount of strength and dexterity.

Desperate to escape Yao's furious assault, Yong Soo stumbled towards Yao's bed and in his failure to sustain his balance, fell heavily on top of Kiku. Before Kiku could so much as utter a cry of protest, his eyes were seeing stars resulted from a forceful blow on his head from a pillow. Yao continued to pummel his cousins mercilessly, ignoring their cries of "No, Yao-nii!" and "Stop, aniki! Pillow fights originate from Korea da-ze!"

Yao was on the verge of beating out all their living daylights when a pair of arms encircled him from behind, pinning his arms to his side so that he could not continue his attack.

"Da Ge! Calm down!" Xiang implored to his struggling brother.

"And you, Xiang!" Yao seethed, "I spend all my holidays building up half your collection of Bruce Lee movies but you won't even help me with my Hello Kitty collection! And now all that perverted bear had to do was bribe you with one miserable DVD and you're giving your own brother to him! You're heartless!" Yao elbowed Xiang, but the attack was useless on Xiang, who could control his qi well due to his training at martial arts classes and block out forceful hits without releasing his grip.

After much fruitless struggling, Yao finally gave up and let his arms fall limply by his side. Being angry was exhausting and it had been ages since he had tried to hit anyone so hard.

"All right, you win. You're all grown up. I can't even teach you a lesson even if I want to aru," Yao said tiredly as he sagged against Xiang.

"No one's trying to win or disobey you," Xiang said calmly.

"That's right, Yao-nii. You've misunderstood our intentions," Kiku said earnestly, eager to pacify Yao before he decided to blow up again. "We only had the best intentions in mind when we set up the date for you and Ivan. After all, you treat us like your own flesh and blood, so it's only right that we repay your kindness."

"If he treats us like his own flesh and blood, how come he nearly killed us while Xiang got away unscathed?" Yong Soo grumbled as he tried to smooth out his flattened, battered strand of idiot hair that was now drooping sadly against his face.

"I've always had better reflexes," Xiang answered matter-of-factly.

"Be quiet and stop adding fuel to the fire," Kiku hissed. Turning to Yao with the sweetest smile he could muster, he said, "Ivan told us that you both quarreled and you were greatly upset but too proud to forgive him, so we tried to help you patch up. Yao-nii is our favourite Nini and if you're unhappy, that makes us unhappy too."

"I love Da Ge more than Papa and Mama," Xiang patted his brother on his head.

"Aniki's breasts are mine da-ze!" Yong Soo flung his arms around Xiang and Yao and hugged them tightly.

"Oh heavens, stop saying such unruly things," Yao admonished Yong Soo, stifling a sniffle as he did so. Kiku pulled out his camera and captured the heartwarming scene.

Moments later, Yao emerged from their embrace, face flushed and eyes watery.

"You boys are embarrassingly mushy aru!" Yao chided half-heartedly as he wiped his eyes on his sleeve.

Yong Soo beamed proudly all round, "See? Told you I'm Aniki's favourite cousin! Just one hug from me and he's reduced to tears da-ze!"

"We think that Ivan really likes you," Kiku continued with his 'caring cousin' demeanor. "We had a serious discussion and we agreed that Ivan has proven his sincerity by putting in so much effort to get into our good books."

"Obviously that's why you're siding with him. However, he has not gotten into my good books, so I don't see why I should agree with you aru," Yao crossed his arms irritably.

"But isn't he your type?" Kiku wheedled. "Just think of those round puppy dog eyes, innocent smile, moe voice and the way he follows you around like a lost little puppy."

"Kiku-hyung makes aniki sound like a pedophile da-ze," Yong Soo smirked.

"Oh shut up aru, I like cute things but that doesn't make me a pedophile aru," Yao complained. He sank down onto his bed. Yong Soo emitted a sudden scream that made him leap up immediately.

"Blood! Blood! Aniki's bleeding! Oh my goodness Aniki's going to die da-ze!" Yong Soo jumped up and down, pointing a shaking finger at Yao's collar, which sported a circular reddish imprint.

"Be quiet, Yong Soo! Stop screaming about nothing!" Yao snapped. The last thing he wanted was for everyone to see the love bite. He tried to shield the tell-tale mark with his hand, but Xiang grabbed his wrist, preventing him from covering it.

"How can it be nothing when blood has seeped through your clothing?" Kiku chided. "You should treat it before your wound gets infected. How did you get injured at such an odd place anyway?"

Ignoring Yao's nervous spluttering, Kiku unbuttoned his collar and yanked it downwards, revealing two tiny wounds still slightly wet with fresh blood. There was a long moment of awkward silence as everyone stared, entranced by the bizarre injury. Yao stared desperately around his room, trying to draw inspiration for an excuse when all-knowing Kiku came to his rescue.

"Ah, that's the bite of a kappa. They're especially prevalent in Autumn. Pesky things, aren't they?" Kiku tipped Yao a big wink.

"Oh. Oh yea. Very sharp teeth they have aru," Yao nodded.

"What are kappa?" Xiang asked, feeling baffled.

"Kappa originates from Korea da-ze!"

"Yong Soo knows. Listen to him," Kiku gave Xiang a slight shove towards the excitable Korean, who immediately launched into a long explanation about how the first kappa, or what he thought was kappa, was discovered in Korea.

"You owe me one," Kiku mouthed at Yao as he went to retrieve the first aid kit from Yao's bedside drawers.

"Thanks," Yao whispered, quite forgetting that he would not have needed helping if his cousins and brother had not been such busy bodies in the first place.

Yao tried his best not to fidget when Kiku dabbed smarting antiseptic lotion over his wound. He took his new Kitty-chan doll from inside his vest and stroked it absent-mindedly.

"Is that a gift from Ivan?" Kiku asked as he carefully placed a band-aid over the wound.

Yao nodded. "Ivan says that it's custom-made aru."

"Ivan is so good to you. Custom-made Hello Kitties must be expensive. I've never even heard of them!" Kiku smiled as he helped Yao to re-button the shirt.

Yao nodded. "Ivan is a lovable boy, but I wish he'd stop treating me like his lover when I'm not aru!"

"Won't you give him a chance? I've never seen anyone more devoted than Ivan. If you agree to be his boyfriend, you could have a greater say over his behaviour in school. I'm quite sure he'd be more than willing to listen to you," Kiku said wisely. Personally, he was sick of Ivan harrassing him to be their matchmaker and had hoped that once Ivan got what he wanted, he would stop disrupting his life.

"I'm not sure that will work out aru. He never listens to me when I scold him for his sexual harrassment," Yao sulked.

"Maybe he thinks that you're just being tsundere," Kiku suggested.

"Being what?"

"Tsundere. Pretending to be cold and hostile to someone when you actually have affectionate feelings for him," Kiku explained serenely.

"Well that's utter rubbish!" Yao snapped. "You know me, I'm frank and blunt. I could not possibly be capable of  such hypocrisy! Is that another one of those stereotypes in your sim dating games? Speaking of that, how about getting yourself a proper boyfriend instead of gluing yourself to a machine? Who's this Heracles person that I keep hearing about? Do you need my help to approach him? You've always been such a shy boy..."

"Uhh that won't be necessary!" Kiku said in alarm. Hastily changing the subject, he said, "Can I have a look at your Kitty-chan? I've never seen a custom-made one in my life although otousan is a partner of Sanrio."

[otousan: Japanese for Father]

"Sure," Yao handed the doll to him.

Kiku inspected the doll carefully. With the presence of stray threads, uneven stitching and slightly lop-sided looking ears, there was no way this doll could be a legitimate product of Sanrio. The crudely sewn on label that said "Made in Latvia" further confirmed Kiku's deduction that this Kitty-chan was a dud. But knowing how Yao would react, he could not let Yao know this.

"The tag states that it belongs to one of the oldest vintage Hello Kitty series. Ivan must have gotten confused. If you'll let me have it for awhile, I can ask otousan to identify it," Kiku said.

"What are you talking about?" Yong Soo's head suddenly appeared over Kiku's shoulder, "The tag just says 'Made in Latvia' da-ze!"

Kiku watched with mortification as Yao's face turned from pallid white to puce.


*     *     *
Why oh why did Heaven enjoy making sport of mankind?

Ivan never had problems locating the copy of 'A Dummy's Guide to Making your Male Friend Gay for You' which Ludwig had lent to him. Whenever he had nothing to do, the book would somehow materialize in front of him, asking to be read. Yet just this once when he really needed to find the book, it simply refused to be found, even with the combined efforts of Eduard, Raivis, Toris and Feliks searching every nook and cranny of his small dormitory room.

Staring around the room which now resembled the aftermath of a tornado, Feliks stretched his arms and said, "The book doesn't exist. You totally made it up because your date with Wang Yao failed big time and you're like trying to ruin my date with Toris. How selfish of you!"

"My date with Yao was a complete success da!" Ivan said huffily. "And I did not make up the book. I've been reading it for the past few days!" Turning on Toris suddenly and causing the poor man to drop a stack of books on his own feet, he demanded, "Did you take it? Kolkolkolkol~"

"Why, how dare you scare my poor Liet-chan and accuse him of taking it!" Feliks gave Ivan a shove and stood protectively in front of Toris, who winced pitifully while examining the damage on his toes. "As if my Liet-chan would need a guide book on romance when he has me! Duh! Such books are totally meant for failures like you! Ivan Braginski in love! What a joke! Pfft!"

"Feliks!" Eduard shook his head warningly as a purple mist appeared around Ivan's head.

"Calm down Ivan, why don't you go out for a breather while we find the book for you," Eduard said coaxingly.

"Why would the big-nosed jerk need a breather when all he's done is sit on the bed and watch us do all the work," Feliks raged. "I tell you, I wouldn't lift a finger for this bully if my poor Liet-chan wasn't such a total wuss. You let us go now or I'll totally kick your ass!"

The doorbell rang in the nick of time, saving the audacious Pole from a beating by the water pipe.

"Hello Ivan," Ludwig greeted cheerfully when Ivan opened the door. "First of all, Gilbert told me all about what happened at the cinema. Congratulations! Just a week ago, you were fretting about winning Wang Yao's heart and today, you're already engaging in such intimacy in public! Talk about instant results! This will teach all those who scoff at me for relying on guidebooks!" Ludwig said proudly.

"Oh that, yes, thank you for the book da," Ivan replied distractedly.

"So now that you obviously don't need it anymore, may I have it back?" Ludwig revealed his motive for the visit.

"Um…" Ivan fidgeted uncomfortably. "But our relationship is young. I'm sure I'll still need Big Sister 801's guidance da."

"I thought you'd say that," Ludwig smiled. "So I brought another book for you. I think it would be useful, considering the progress of your relationship."

When Ivan took the book and looked at the cover of 'Dummy's Guide to Hot Yaoi Sex by Big Sister 801', he promptly started bleeding from his nose. The cover illustration featured an effeminate-looking man, who bore a startling resemblance to Yao, wearing a short nurse's uniform and a deep blush on his cheeks. He was lying on a hospital bed, hair tousled, with his wrists bound together by bandages. A much larger man with beige-blonde hair, clad in a doctor's white coat bent over his helpless nurse with a feral smile on his otherwise angelic-looking face.

"It's Big Sister 801's latest release!" Ludwig said as he stuffed a handkerchief into Ivan's hand. "Did you both model for the cover? That looks awfully like you."

"Do you think so too da?" Ivan gushed. "I wasn't aware of any modeling offers but it probably wasn't hard to get an artist's impression of us. We practically go everywhere together~"

"That's true," Ludwig nodded. "Well, you can have this book. But can I have my other book back now? There is something in there that I have to look up."

"You both are like totally hopeless! Fancy putting your love life in the hands of guidebooks! Pish tosh!" Feliks snorted cynically from behind Ivan, who gratefully accepted the book and put it inside his coat.

"You may laugh," Ludwig said stoutly, "but it's all thanks to my book that Ivan and Yao are such a lovey-dovey couple now. Not to mention, Feliciano and I are practically the model couple in our cohort, even if he's a bit too sticky at times."

"Yea yea," Feliks twirled a golden lock of hair lazily around his finger. "But I don't suppose we'll ever find out how great that book is since the big-nose jerk's like lost it."

The smile on Ludwig's face sagged and anxiety appeared in his calm, blue eyes.

"What! You lost my book? How could you? How am I going to remember how to pacify Feliciano when there's no pasta?" Ludwig tore at his neatly combed-back hair in frustration.

"I'll buy you a new book da. It's not the end of the world," Ivan rolled his eyes. He could not fathom why Ludwig was so upset. If the book had really been such a masterpiece, he would not be fretting over pacifying Yao right now.

"I should have known better than to lend it to you! I penned many of my own personal experiences and inspirations inside, including what to do when there's no pasta. You wouldn't be able to replace them with money!" Ludwig grabbed Ivan's collar in agitation.

Ivan felt his muscles stiffen as defensive mechanisms kicked in. Instinctively, Ivan directed a powerful fist at Ludwig, who covered his eyes and bent over, wheezing in pain. Their shocked audience emitted gasps of surprise.

"Please, you guys, there's no sensibility in coming to blows over a book. We're already trying our best to look for it," Eduard implored, but his pleas fell on deaf ears. Ludwig was a stickler for rules, but he was not a very good-tempered man and had no qualms bending a rule to go on the offensive if angered. He threw a well-aimed punch at Ivan's nose, which started to bleed again.

"I thought you seemed better after associating with Wang Yao but I'm clearly mistaken!" Ludwig shouted.

Complete pandemonium reigned in the tiny room as Ludwig and Ivan rolled around on the floor hurling punches at one another. Feliks punched his fists in the air, cheering for Ludwig to "kick Ivan's sorry ass". Raivis chanted with him. Eduard's pleas for calm went unheeded while Toris cradled his aching stomach with his arms. So much so that when Yao let himself in with a severe expression on his face fifteen minutes later, nobody noticed him, along with the crowd of students that had gathered in the corridor because of all the noise.

"Aiya! You're so noisy! I could hear you all the way from outside your building aru! Pipe down or I'll give all of you detention!" Yao shouted.

Reluctantly, Ivan and Ludwig relinquished their grip on each other. They stood up, dusting themselves, neither emerging victorious as both of them sported an equal number of tears on their uniform and bruises on their faces.

"Yao~ He hit me~ It really hurts da~" Ivan ran over to Yao and whined piteously at him.

"He started it first!" Ludwig protested.

"Yea, I can totally vouch for him," Feliks quipped.

Turning his back coldly on Ivan, Yao addressed the group at large, "What exactly was it that caused you two to start acting like hooligans? Can't you act your age and iron things out amicably like adults aru? And I can't believe the rest of you didn't stop them!"

Everyone fell silent, knowing full well that if they revealed the real reason behind their scuffle, everyone in the room would be implicated. Big Sister 801's books were strictly banned on campus. It was a rule that both Yao and Arthur exercised zealously, causing many books to be confiscated and land permanent homes in Professor Roma's office.

A sudden brainwave struck Ivan. He took out the new book that Ludwig had lent him and handed it to Yao.

"We were fighting because I wanted to hand over this book to you as promised but Ludwig wouldn't let me. It belongs to him, you see."

"Why you!" Ludwig seethed. He grimaced helplessly as Yao took the book and looked at it with a disdainful expression. The frown on Yao's face deepened as he studied the cover illustration with deep distaste and concern – why on Earth did it look so familiar when he had never associated himself with such indecent pictures. His deep frown turned to a look of pure horror when the uncanny resemblance of the cover illustration hit him.

"I… Ivan! You… you did this aru!" Yao jabbed his finger agitatedly at the cover as he looked angrier than Ivan had ever seen him.

"Me? But I can't draw da! Art was my worst subject in high school!" Ivan raised both hands into the air in protest.

"Then you must have given a picture to the publisher!" Yao concluded furiously. "How dare you! I have already made very clear to you my thoughts on such indecency aru!"

"Oh please, you can't be so decent yourself if you're like having sex in public in full view of other people," Feliks clicked his tongue. It delighted him to see Ivan in trouble, but he found Yao's hypocrisy to be just as annoying as the violent polar bear.

"What? What… what… I don't know what you're talking about aru! Ivan Braginski! What horrible rumours have you been spreading!" Yao's voice rose sharply.

"I never spread any rumours or sent out any pictures da~" Ivan said tearfully. "Why do you keep accusing me of things I haven't done?"

"Because you've proven yourself to be every bit an unreliable, dishonest, cheating scum!" Yao bristled as he took out his counterfeit kitty-chan doll, the very reason for his visit, and rapped Ivan hard on the head with it. The doll's soft body probably did little to hurt him, but everyone was shocked by Yao's gall, and all the more so by the fact that Ivan was meekly allowing himself to be shouted at and assaulted.

"Do mine eyes deceive me? He's totally not retaliating!" Feliks gasped, a sentiment echoed by everyone as frantic whispering carried through the intrigued audience.

"What did I do now?" Ivan cried, his eyes shining with tears. It almost made Yao feel sorry for remonstrating him, but still, a lie was a lie and could not be excused.

"Look at this! Look at the tag!" Yao shoved the dud Kitty-chan doll into his face.

"Uh… it says 'Made in Latvia'," Ivan squinted at it. He did not know what was so wrong with that. While a lot of things were made in China, surely it was reasonable that there were exceptions. He was about to use that argument in his defense when Raivis spoke up.

"That would be me who did that. I'm from Latvia and many people use that as my nickname too. I hope you like the doll, on account that I had to pick up sewing in a week because Ivan bullied me into it. It may not be as good as the real thing, but I tried my best," Raivis said sincerely.

"LATVIA!" Eduard and Toris cried. Ivan had a strong sense of foreboding.

"You made the doll yourself aru?" Yao asked. Raivis nodded and he held up his hands in affirmation. They were covered with band-aid and bore marks of being pricked by needles.

"You poor thing aru! And you're so cute too!" Yao flung his arms around the little Latvian, whose cheeks turned slightly pink. A jealous Ivan let out an infuriated snarl.

Yao released his grip and smiled at Raivis with motherly benevolence. "I'll treasure this doll, but don't let Ivan take advantage of you again. I'll give you my number and you can call me if Ivan bullies you in future. I'll teach him a lesson for you aru."

"That would be great!" Raivis beamed.

"What? That's not fair!" Ivan cried. "I'm your boyfriend and you won't even give me your number! Yet you're giving it to someone you hardly know! And you even hugged him!"

"You're not my boyfriend! You never were, and you never will be! I will not have a bully and a liar for my boyfriend aru!" Yao said brutally. He hastily keyed his phone number into Raivis' phone and made to leave. The sooner he got away, the better. Ivan looked so woebegone that he feared that his heart would soften if he continued to stay in the same room.

"Yao!" Without warning, Ivan had got down to his knees in front of Yao and flung his arms around Yao's thighs and butt.

"Aiya!" Yao exclaimed. "Where are you touching aru!"

But that was not the worst. To Yao's utmost dismay, Ivan buried his tearful face in, of all places, his crotch.

"Let me go! Let me go aru!" Yao cried desperately. He tugged at Ivan's hair with his hands. He pummeled his back with his fists. He tried to push Ivan's hands away. But Ivan only held on tighter. Yao's desperation grew as he felt Ivan's nose pressing firmly against his vital regions, merely separated by two thin layers of cloth from his pants and underpants. Some students had begun to giggle at the comical scene of Ivan sniveling away at Yao's privates.

"I won't let you go unless you forgive me da," Ivan said in a resolute voice. He rubbed his head against Yao. A tingling sensation cruised through Yao's nether regions, causing him to emit an agitated squeal.

"Stop moving! Someone get him off me aru!"

"If anyone dares to interfere, I'll hit you with my water pipe! Kolkolkolkol~"

"Help me! Or I'll give you detention for refusing to help a fellow student in trouble aru!"

Several students had begun to creep away. Between weeding the peony garden and being attacked by Ivan, they would gladly choose the former, for it would at least guarantee their limbs intact. Although Yao had just promised so stoutly minutes ago that he could teach Ivan a lesson, he could not even free himself from Ivan's clutches. It was best to not offend Ivan since Yao seemed every bit as unreliable as Arthur when it came to putting bullies like Ivan in their place. Even Ludwig had decided not to interfere, shrugging it off as a lover's spat.

"Don't go!" Yao cried as all the students trickled out of the room. The door slammed shut behind Feliks, leaving Yao alone with Ivan. Ivan's lips curled into a triumphant smile. He tightened his embrace around Yao's lower body, as though he would never let go.

To be continued…

Topic : Axis Powers Hetalia
Genre : Anime/Manga

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