You were flipping through your Calculus notebook, trying to find the page you had written your homework on. When you finally arrived, a small slip of paper was also there. You lifted the paper curiously, and when you turned it around, the printed words shocked you.
You are so beautiful.
How could someone like you
Ever love someone so awful like me?
You looked around, surveying everyone. You hadn't seen anyone anywhere close to your things for the twenty minutes you had already been in class, and the only ones who had access to your things was Ludwig Beilschmidt and Honda Kiku, but you knew very well that they wouldn't leave little depressing love notes for you.
You were tempted to crumple up the note but instead, you simply tucked it into a random page in your Calculus notebook and started reviewing your homework, making sure your answers were correct.
"Are you okay?" the deep voice of Ludwig said beside you. The German accent was reassuring, and you looked up with a smile and a nod. "Are you sure?"
"Actually, I don't understand number fourteen. I got the question wrong, but I don't see why. Could you explain it to me?"
The handsome German reached over and took your notebook. "Ah, vell, yes. You see right here?" He pointed to an exponent. "You left it out in the next step." Your eyes followed his finger, and they widened in realization at the simple mistake.
"Oh. Wow. How did I miss that?"
You took your notebook back, and when your fingers brushed his, a blush began to blossom on your face.
If that note was really from a secret admirer, you really hoped it was from him.
You stared at the note.
Here was another note, and it was in the same font, the same size, everything.
I like you too much.
Who do you like?
It wasn't even a typical kind of love note.
The question was obviously rhetorical. How could you answer this person
and why would you answer in the first place?
"Vhat is vith you? You seemed bothered," Ludwig said, leaning towards you.
The two of you were at his house; he was your German tutor. That was how you guys had met, actually. You were failing German I junior year, so the teacher had asked Ludwig to tutor you. The teacher liked you because you worked hard in his class; the information just didn't stick, no matter how much you studied. You had only sort of known the German prior to that class. You and him had shared math class every year since the freshmen year, but you guys had never spoken much.
At first, tutoring with Ludwig was impossible. He was so annoying, especially when he got angry at how bad you were in German. However, you soon managed to get the language, little by little, and the aggressive German grew on you and vice versa. What was once just tutoring became friendship.
He was actually the first one to say hello to you outside of the tutoring session. You guys had been walking past each other on your way to second period. You had been caught off guard and hadn't said a word, but you made sure to be the first to greet him the next time you saw him outside of tutoring.
And here's the worst part: somehow, you managed to develop this massive crush on him. That was why you were so selfishly wishing this note was from him.
"(name)? Are you okay?" Ludwig tried again with you.
Your eyes snapped up to him, and you managed a nod.
You stuffed the note into the pocket of your jeans before he could grab the paper, and he stared at you incredulously.
"Lassen Sie uns weiter," you spoke, your voice shaky and your pronouncation terrible.
"Lassen Sie uns weiter," he repeated slowly so you could get the words right.
You said those words again, trying to say it correctly.
A chuckle escaped his mouth, and he shook his head. "Stop trying to sound as if German is English. It's not." He took you by the chin, his large thumb landing on your bottom lip. "Repeat after me. Lassen."
"Now say it all together."
"Lassen Sie uns weiter."
"Now you sound French."
You let out a groan and pulled away from him, burying you face in your arms. That was your biggest problem at the moment. You could understand the written words and when others spoke to you, but you were absolutely terrible at speaking the language yourself. Nothing ever came out right, and Ludwig was rumored to be able to teach even the worst student in a few months.
It was over a year now, and you still could barely pronounce short phrases correctly.
"(name)?" You made a sound to indicate you were listening. "Vhat vas on that paper?"
Your head shot up as your entire face began to burn up and turn scarlet. "I-it's n-no-othing."
"Then vhy are you acting so flustered?"
I am not! Nein!"
At least "no" was something you could say correctly.
Ludwig let it go, but you could tell that not knowing was bothering him.
And that was your clue. Ludwig was not sending you these letters.
You let out a helpless, annoyed sound.
I wish you could understand.
I suppose it's really hard to see.
I am not good at expression,
And you're not good at me.
Since the bell hadn't rung yet, you took the paper and walked over to where Kiku sat, nearly stuffing the note in his face. If it wasn't Ludwig, it had to be Kiku. He was the only one in your Calculus class that saw you prior to this period and could sneak this into your notebook.
"Are you sending these?"
"Why would I sent this? We're onry friends, (name)."
You sat down in front of him. "But this is my third one since yesterday in this class. It's driving me crazy. I need to know who is sending these as soon as possible."
"Maybe it's Ludwig," Kiku suggested.
"Can't be," you said as you folded the paper gingerly. "I know he isn't sending these. I can tell just by his expression whenever I get these. Besides, look at him, Kiku. He wouldn't send these even if he meant it." You stood back up, placing the note in your pocket with the other two. You were determined to take these everywhere with you because you figured there could be a clue within them. "Anyway, I'll see you later. And I will get to the bottom of this!" You put up your fist and said what Im Yong Soo liked to hear you say: "Fighting!"
When you returned to your seat, Ludwig turned to you. "Vhat do they say, (name)? Vhat is it that I vould not send?"
You shook your head as you covered your face. "Don't worry about. But hey, how do you do the first problem on the warm-up?"
You didn't miss the dejected look that quickly passed through Ludwig's eyes, but they were quickly replaced with annoyance as he muttered, "This is vhy I told you to study."
You mean the world to me.
I'd give up everything
To be with you.
I swear I would.
But would you care?
You looked up at Ludwig, completely immersed in his novel that he failed to notice you dying from curiosity over who your secret admirer was. This was the tenth note! You let out a rapid sigh and put the note in your pocket before you tried to return your attention to the German words and phrases in front of you. None of it was making any sense to you.
"Can I take a break, Luddy?" you called out. "Bitte!"
"Vhy?" he asked calmly. "How much vork have you done?"
"I can't concentrate!" you pouted as you stood, heading over to the sofa to sit down next to him. You let yourself fall against him, letting your head get comfortable on his shoulder. "My mind is so troubled."
"Don't worry about it," you murmured before you put your arms around his torso. "I am so tired, Luddy. Can I take a nap?"
"You really should be study"
"Just five minutes! Please!"
He looked down at your eyes, wide and begging, and he sighed. A year ago, he found it easy to say no to you. Now
now he couldn't even begin to think of making you unhappy. This feeling was driving him insane.
You gave him a quick hug before you went to the other end of the sofa and curled up into a ball, closing your eyes.
He wasn't there when you woke up. However, where he had been sitting, a small slip of paper sat. You crawled over to it, picking it up.
Meet me outside the bakery.
I promise you'll see who I really am.
You looked around, stuffing the note in your pocket. You decided to look around the house to see if Ludwig was there, but besides his annoying brother snickering as he texted, the place was empty.
It had to be from Ludwig, even if you were so sure it wasn't.
Happiness was bursting from you as you quickly put on your coat and boots, and you nearly hopped down the stairs before you broke out into a run to the bakery. It was nearly ten minutes away, but it was completely worth it for Ludwig. Everything was worth it for Ludwig.
But he wasn't there.
Actually, the bakery was nearly empty, save for a worker sitting behind the counter, texting someone. At the sound of the bell, the worker looked up.
"Are you (name) (last name)?" he asked you.
You nodded slowly, and the guy got up, walking around the counter to hand you an envelope. You gave him a weird look but thanked him anyway, leaving the bakery.
And as soon as you were outside, you tore the envelope open, eager to find out who
Your breath got caught in your throat, and your eyes immediately began to fill with tears. You looked around, but there was no one you knew here. Your body started to shake as your eyes read over the words again.
No one's here.
No one cares.
So cry all you want.
Who'll stop and listen to you?
You were sure these were from him
Your feet began to move, your legs taking long strides. Your entire body wanted to get back to Luddy's house to see if he was back yet, if he was the one behind this cruel joke.
he wasn't like that though. Your brain refused to believe it could be him.
You burst through the door, panting hard. Your tears felt like they were burning through your frigid cheeks, and Ludwig peeked his head out from the kitchen.
"Vhere did you go, (name)?"
"Where were you?" you asked. "Where were you just at, and please tell me the truth, Ludwig."
"Oh, vell, I vent to the supermarket. You vere sleeping so much, I thought it best to make some dinner for y"
"So, you weren't at the bakery?"
" he whispered as he walked over to you, touching your cheeks. "(name)
vhy are you crying?"
"I'm so pathetic," you wailed before you buried your face into his shirt, clinging to him desperately. "Everyone hates me."
vhat are you talking about?"
You pulled away and took out all the notes from your pocket, handing them to him. "I thought they were real, but they're not. Somebody was just playing with me, and I fell for it. " You tried to stop the tears from pouring out of you. "Why are people so mean?" you sobbed.
"Vait here," he muttered as he stood, and he headed up the stairs.
You sat there, watching after him, and your sobs started to slow as you continued to watch, wondering why he had left so suddenly.
And soon enough, you knew.
He dragged his brother done the stairs, basically throwing him down in front of you. "Apologize, verdammt."
"What?" you asked.
"My bruder told me he had been sending you love letters. I
I didn't think much of it, and then you
" He stopped talking, realizing he had just basically signed himself on as an accomplice of his brother.
Because he had known this entire time who was sending these love letters. He had known that they were love letters, and he had let his brother persist.
And he had let his brother basically slam your heart into the pavement and run over it with a car.
You quickly grabbed your things, stuffing it into your book bag as you tried to fight back the tears.
I didn't mean for it to hurt y"
"Please stop," you croaked as you tried to zip your bag. "Just stop." Your chin trembled as the world became blurry through hot tears. "I don't think I'll be wanting anymore German lessons, Ludwig. I'm sorry for the inconvenience. Have a good day."
"N-no!" he suddenly yelled, and you looked up in utter surprise. "I
I vill not allow you to leave, (name). I cannot. I
ich liebe dich, (name)!"
It felt as if the oxygen had been stolen from your lungs, as if your heart had stopped beating. You couldn't move an inch, and you stared at him, wondering if this wasn't just your imagination.
And he moved forward, his arm curling itself around your waist.
I love you, (name)," he whispered. "Gilbert sent those letters because of me, so I could confess to you. I didn't know he was going to send that last one though
I'm sorry. Es tut mir leid."
And then something inside you clicked, and you tackled the nervous, ashamed German to the ground, mashing your lips against his.
"Ich liebe dich, Ludwig!" you gasped happily, pressing your mouth against his over and over in a series if pecks. "So much."
He chuckled. "You really must work on your German, Liebling." He didn't allow you to whine about his critique though; no, instead, he pulled you against him and kissed you like he had always dreamed of, not holding anything back.
He'd make Gilbert pay for hurting you later. Right now, he was too happy to beat anyone up.