Disclaimer: I don’t own any of the characters from Axis Powers Hetalia!
Summary: “The core of Germany is Prussia. There is the source of the recurring pestilence.” Winston Churchill
“The core of Germany is Prussia. There is the source of the recurring pestilence.”
Arthur glanced across the room, away from his boss, to survey the two men – nations – in question.
It was hard to tell whether Germany was even listening to the proceedings of the discussion (though past experience of his disposition led Arthur to believe that he probably was). His usually rigid frame was slack, his eyes hallow and his face weary.
Prussia, on the other hand, looked completely alert. He too seemed to have lost a little of his edge, the taste of defeat still fresh upon his tongue. His eyes, however, glinted dangerously; daring those present to approach his brother. His hard gaze was pointedly avoided. His hands were clenched into fists, pale skin taut over his knuckles and trembling with barely suppressed frustration.
Crimson eyes roamed the expanse of the room like searchlights. Arthur ducked his head instinctively.
In an attempt to keep from dwelling on the reasons for the reflexive action, he tried to focus on the words of his boss... The tension that seemed to congeal the air, however, prevented them from reaching his hearing.
x X x
As a nation Prussia had the option to hear the Allies’ verdict on his future before his boss was notified of the news. He staunchly refused this privilege, insisting in standing by his boss as his fate was revealed.
The fierce loyalty that Prussia felt towards his boss was unrivalled; most nations thought fondly of their human counterparts, but did not dwell on them. After all, they certainly did not ‘last’ very long by their standards. The only other who felt any attachment to their boss was Arthur to the British Monarchy. Not that it had as much control over the country’s affairs anymore.
On the whole, most nations found his complete devotion to be baffling.
It was entirely possible, Arthur mused, that Prussia already had some idea of what the final decision concerning himself and his brother would be despite being excluded from the concluding meeting.
He watched, unseen, as two men exited the office. They shared a few words, too quiet for Arthur to catch, before the older looking one walked away. The white haired man remained stationary.
“And just what us an Ally doing sneaking around here? I assumed you all knew what the outcome for me would be already.” He did not turn around.
Arthur stepped away from the pillar that he had been leaning against which had shielded him from view. Joining the albino, he noted the other’s eyes growing wide. Knowing the reason, Arthur answered the unspoken question. “France will come to see you with Spain once he has secured a bottle of wine.”
Prussia did not acknowledge this with a response, beginning to walk in silence. Arthur matched his pace.
Prussia’s face was unreadable. His jaw was still set stubbornly, as it always was, his lips a determined line. His usually expressive eyes gave away nothing.
“So, old man, will I at least go out with a bang?” The fact that the line was delivered with such convincing nonchalance caused Arthur to flinch.
“...I don’t know.” His response was bleak and honest. He couldn’t even find it in himself to snap a retort defending his age; compared to the man beside him, he was old. “Although Prussia as a nation will be abolished, the majority of the land will be retained by Germany. We do not know whether the two of you can co-exist as they do in Italy. You may fare as the Roman Empire did.”
Prussia’s features were still impassive. “No big bang for me then.” He still spoke as though referring to a stranger; it didn’t even seem forced.
This only served to increase Arthur’s discomfort.
Reaching out, Arthur grasped the other’s elbow from behind. Deep red orbs - surprised, stony, expectant – regarded him calmly. Whatever words the Englishman had intended to voice died on his tongue.
When Arthur merely stared Prussia shrugged one brow raised, and began to walk again. Arthur remained stationary; that retreating back was still tall and proud as it had been for centuries. Of course they had fought as enemies and allies alike, as long and tumultuous as Europe’s history was. Arthur could remember clearly the times that they had drawn swords side by side, as well as the times that the very same swords had drawn each other’s blood. England as a nation may have forgotten the bonds shared over time but Arthur had not.
The silence that reigned was in no way condemning. Arthur still felt as though he was answerable to the other. “Our bosses had the last say; we couldn’t intercede on any decisions made.” His words were faltering as he tried to defend himself.
“The age of the empire has ended and they believe you to be a pioneer of authoritarianism.”
“Is that so?”
Where were the proclamations of so called ‘awesomeness’? Even Prussia could be serious when required, it seemed. Arthur was aware that he had probably already been told all that he had just said… He had hoped to draw some kind of reaction from the other… And really, he had no place feeling any guilt for the verdict that had been drawn. Arthur’s gaze dropped to the floor.
The sound of footsteps faded as Prussia came to a halt. He glanced back at Arthur over his shoulder, then turned around to face him fully after surveying him for a moment. The apathetic mask had fallen somewhat, his features seeming a little more natural in the neutral expression he now wore. He shook his head lightly, as though indulging a young child as he spoke. “I had a feeling that it would come to this. And I can’t imagine this being any worse than my first ‘dissolution’.” His eyes became shadowed for a moment before they returned to their previous state; Arthur had felt betrayed when America had declared independence from him, but he could only imagine what Prussia had been through as his own brother had attempted to compromise his very existence!
The two men searched for the source of the new voice finding it to be France, closely followed by Spain, who had indeed acquired a bottle of wine.
“Well, England, I guess I’ll be going.” Prussia nodded at Arthur and threw him a sardonic salute. “I’ll see you around. Then again maybe I won’t.”
Arthur watched as he sauntered away, prodding Spain and demanding German beer as though he hadn’t a care in the world; as though the possibility that his country (which was now more on the level of a state) may not exist tomorrow had no bearing on his life at all.
And perhaps it didn’t.
A new age was dawning, and who knew how Prussia – who revelled in warfare – would cope? Then again, his quick thinking had saved him before; perhaps he could use his wit once more to adapt if he did, indeed, survive?
Seeing the three backs disappear around a corner Arthur shook his head. He should be more worried about himself.
~ Weltanschauung - The overall perspective from which one sees and interprets the world. I chose this as the title as a reference to the theme of the change in the world’s perspective with regards to war and militarism.
~ Prussia’s Abolition –
De facto - 30 January 1934, by Hitler
De jour - 25 February 1947, by Allies
~ “The core of Germany is Prussia. There is the source of the recurring pestilence.” Winston Churchill actually said this to British Parliament, but I’m using artistic licence and saying that he said it again when the allies discussed Prussia and Germany’s fate.
A/N: I've been wanting to write something on this ever since I saw the quote and started churning this out in September. And then didn't touch it til the beginning of this month XD Oh well, at least I've managed to finish it now~
Thank you for reading, and Merry Chrismas~!