And then Ariana wrote PruSp headcanon
Antonio and Gilbert have been best friends since they were quite small. Francis and Antonio used to coddle over the young knight, teasing him and playing with him and generally playing around with him. Antonio spent a little more time with Gilbert, as Francis’ attention was more focused on other people most of the time (being the social butterfly that he was).
As they all grew up, the three stayed as close as could be, with the occasional rift that was quickly fixed with a night of heavy drinking and activities that they didn’t remember (or, well, tried to forget) the next morning.
Antonio had always had a special affection for Gilbert, ever since he was young, but he never understood it. It was very close to what he felt for Francis, which was also a very unexplainable feeling. As he did with a lot of his confusing feelings, he brushed them off, deciding to deal with them at a later time.
It wasn’t until about World War II that Antonio finally pulled those long-buried feelings out, albeit unintentionally. Seeing the man he’d given piggy back rides to and made flower crowns for caught up in such a cruel situation (not that he had room to talk, with his own wars and issues lingering in the background) broke his heart. He wanted to contact Gilbert, try and talk to him before things got too bad, but Franco forbade any communication with the Germans, forcing Antonio to sit back and watch the empire, and life, of his once proud friend collapse.
The time Gilbert was stuck on the other side of the wall encompassed the longest time he’d been without interaction with the German since the 1700’s. He desperately missed his friend, but consoled himself but assuring himself that everything would turn out for the better.
Once the wall went down, Antonio was ecstatic, but he still couldn’t see Gilbert, more by his own will than his government’s. He wanted to give the German brothers time to recuperate and heal, and he knew that the healing process didn’t involve him.
But the moment Gilbert seemed well enough to have visitors, Antonio dedicated a lot of his time helping Ludwig nurse Gilbert back to a slight shade of his former self. Slowly, the Prussian regained himself, and Francis even came around to visit, letting go of his resentment from war.
It was great to have his two best friends back together, but with everything seemingly back to normal, that pesky feeling returned, and persists until present day, although he does his best not to act on it, although he desperately wants to. In normal circumstances, the passionate Spaniard pursues his feelings, but he still finds Gilbert’s state fragile and wants to keep him as unstressed as possible.
[I wrote this while watching a comedy special so if it has typos or doesn’t make sense in some parts…………..]