It was late at night- midnight, to be exact- but England was still awake. He was in his private room, his dark cloak on with the hood pulled up, his face lit only by a few thick candles placed on the floor in a special way. He loved his new colony, America, too much to leave the poor boy unprotected when England was not there to guard him.
So, England was just using a little of his magic to make sure the boy would be safe after he left the morning after tomorrow. Nothing dark, just a easy (if not lengthy) spell to keep America nice and secure in the modest house they had built for him.
Just as he was completing the spell, just as the marks on the ground flared with a warm light, England noticed the open door out of the corner of his eye. He finished, then pulled of his hood and cloak.
"America?" he called softly, turning towards the door. He only got a soft, sad squeak in return.
He moved towards the door and heard the sounds of soft footsteps running down the dark hallway. England easily caught up to America, having the advantage of longer legs, and scooped the frightened boy into his arms. Uncharacteristically, the boy struggled against England.
"No, let go!" he wailed, but England held him firmly.
"What's wrong, my boy? Did you have a bad dream?"
America was crying.
"Y-yes…! A-and then I went to come f-f-find you, a-and I saw y-you doing…"
"Doing what?" England prodded gently as he carried America into the kitchen. Tea. Tea would make this situation so much easier.
England's heart sank as if it was made of lead. He'd heard of the witch-hunts starting in the colonies, but he never thought it would reach his young ward's ears. He couldn't have America be terrified of him, lest he decide that France really was the better caregiver. But what to do?
"A-America…not all magic is bad. That was good magic. 'White' magic, if you will. I wasn't harming anyone with it; I was just making sure you would be safe when I'm not here."
"Witches are liars! Oh, England, don't be a witch! We're s-supposed to kill witches a-a-and I d-don't w-w-want you t-t-to be d-d-dead!" America sobbed. England sighed and put the kettle on for tea. At least the boy didn't hate him.
"What would you like me to say, then?" he asked. It didn't much matter now, America was protected and that was all that mattered to him.
"S-say it wasn't real! S-say you were just…making it up!"
"Wh-what?!" England squawked. Tell America that magic wasn't real? No. He would not close that road for the boy. It was true, not all magical creatures were benign, but there were so many that were. They could be excellent allies. To have America not believe in magic would only leave the colony more defenseless than he already was.
But, as small voice in England's head said, But you will always be watching over him. Your allies are his allies. Under your care, what does it matter if he does not see what you see? They are real nonetheless, and they will protect him. But he needs to stay in your care for that to happen. Appease the boy and assuage his fears.
"I-If you need me to say it was pretend, I will say it was only pretend," England said, after trying to work the phrasing of his sentence so he still had The Sight.
"Oh, England!" America cried happily, hugging his mentor's legs as the kettle began to whistle. England reached down and patted the boy's soft hair.
He will be safe in my care.
Years later, England sat in his parlor, alone, drinking tea. He had lost America. The boy was his own nation now. He was no longer under England's care, and he was vulnerable.
As bitter and angry as he was for the boy's rebellion, England was worried. He still loved America like no other, and the thought that he was now unable to protect the boy from the world frightened and sickened him.
This is partially my fault, he thought, That spell I made when he was so little…it was to protect him from everything, including me and my king. And now that he dos not have The Sight, once again because of me, he is unprotected. The spell is broken now, ever since he broke away. He is truly independent…and alone.
England's mind was made up. It was his fault that America was alone, and only he could help. He vowed that if their relationship ever improved, he would use every chance he had to make the boy believe again.
A/N: I don't know how, but this came to me in the shower. These two are so fun to write~! Reviews are love.