A/N: A fic written for the prompt "France does parkour" on the kink meme. Please enjoy~
At first, France had thought they were nothing more than uncouth, young vagrants who only wanted to show off and create havoc in whichever neighborhood they were currently situated. They were the youth of his nation, comprised mostly of young, able men who appreciated only the life of an urban street-dweller rather than the elegance of someone from a finer class. They wore baggy t-shirts with shorts and ran about every which way, climbing over obstacles, jumping about like frogs in a pond.
But a person's opinion can change, no?
Although France would never admit it, he was quite old, even for a nation. He had been around for quite some time and no longer had as nimble a body from when he was younger. He preferred reclining on his couch with a glass of wine than running about on the streets like a lunatic. The 21st century allowed him such luxuries, and France was not just about to waste it.
As much as France didn't want to admit it, however, his urban youth were just as much a part of him as anyone else. Although Francis tried not to associate with them, he one day found himself walking the same street as those performing parkour.
As he watched them, he held his nose in the air and said, "I didn't know monkeys were allowed on the streets, you know…" But they merely laughed and shrugged off what Francis had thought was a good insult. When he looked back on it, he realized it really wasn't all that insulting, but that was hardly of any importance at the moment.
They called him old and said he couldn't handle the necessary disciplines that came with learning parkour. Normally, Francis would have ignored these impudent teenagers, but they were presenting him with a challenge. And being Francis, he wanted to prove them wrong. He wanted to show them that he could learn their little art just as he could learn the other art forms that have crossed his path throughout all these years.
The parkour group agreed to train him. Francis had one condition, and it was that he be allowed to wear pants and a button up shirt. He refused to wear the t-shirt and jeans they wore. It pained Francis to wear sneakers with his dressy clothes, but it was better than what these young men were wearing.
The first few training sessions had been intense. It was much harder to learn than Francis had first imagined. You had to learn to manipulate the environment to your advantage. France found himself falling to the ground many, many times before he got the hang of it. And these were merely small tasks, such as jumping from object to object or tumbling forward from a location high above the ground. The thing was that the objects were very close and that the locations were only a few feet high. They were simple, but France, slowly starting to appreciate this art, desired to learn more.
An entire year of training had given him the ability to manipulate his environment as expertly as they did. It wasn't about learning a single move and determining where to show off and when. It wasn't about showing off at all. It was almost a martial art, but instead of attacking your opponent, you were escaping them. There was a certain elegance when it came to parkour, and although Francis would have never associated parkour and elegance together before, he found that he had been profoundly wrong.
The movement of the body leaping through the air to skillfully land on the ground and continue running forward was a feat to accomplish indeed. Francis loved this move most of all. You had to land on the toes of your feet, never the flat of your foot. It was almost cat-like in a way, and it was exhilarating to experience.
Francis sighed as he looked at his watch. A world meeting was taking place today, and it was being held in France this month. But unfortunately, he was running late. Racing down the steps of his home, Francis looked around him to see if he could somehow hail a cab on time. His car needed repairs (he should never have let America drive his car knowing that the naïve idiot didn't drive on the left side of the road). Looking to his watch again, France decided that he ought to finally put his parkour lessons to use.
Bounding from the front of his house, he raced across the street, using cars as leverage for his leaps. He would place his hands on the hood and push his feet through, landing on his toes and tumbling forward. Francis continued to run, facing many similar obstacles on the way. As he came across a bench, he leapt through the air in one graceful long jump, having effectively hurdled over the entire object without even touching it.
As he turned down an alleyway that would get him to his destination faster, Francis figured it would be best if he climbed up to the roof. It would make for a much easier and clearer route to the building where the meeting was taking place. Therefore, he bounded towards the ladder of a fire escape and clung to one of the bars, using the swinging momentum gathered to quickly hoist himself up and onto the metal floor. After racing up the rest of the length of the fire escape, Francis jumped up and grabbed the edge of the building, pulling himself onto the roof and tumbling forward, continuing to run. He jumped from roof to roof as carefully and as quickly as he could. He had less than five minutes to get to the building.
After leaping over the rooftops for at least another minute, Francis saw he was nearing a dead end. Jumping as far as he could, Francis prepared to tumble to the ground. He did so with perfect precision and continued to run, jumping over the railing of a street and speeding towards his destination. A car had almost hit him as he ran across the street, but France outstretched his arm so it hit the hood first, using the force of the move to have him do a sideways tumble across the hood of the car. Francis saw more railing, higher up this time, so instead of going over it, he grabbed the barrier and pushed his legs underneath and through it. He was nearly there.
The other nations had gathered in the meeting room already. It was taking place on the first floor. It was scorching hot that day, so the windows were open. Many of the nations stood by the windows in order to get some fresh air. They were all waiting on France who was inexplicably late for some reason. As England looked out the window, he saw a man racing towards the building. The man had blond hair and was doing these amazing acrobatic stunts. England's eyes widened when he realized who it was. "F-Francis?" he said to himself, none of the other nations registering that he had spoken.
Before the other nations knew what was going on, France leapt through the window, tumbled to the ground and stood up, catching his breath. The other nations' mouths were wide open, trying to comprehend the situation. Breathing heavily and lifting one hand while the other was on his lap, Francis said, "Do not worry, my darlings, brother France is here!" He would have shouted this, but he was still trying to catch his breath, which made the statement come out quieter than usual.
Wiping his forehead with a handkerchief, Francis looked around the room to find that everyone was staring. A little taken aback, he asked, "I know my looks can be quite dazzling, but why do you all stare?"
England sputtered in response. "Y-you…you just…right through the window! You- jumping?! J-just what the bloody hell was that?!" The other nations nodded their heads in agreement with Arthur's non-cohesive sentence.
Francis gave a small laugh when he understood. "Ah, I apologize for not telling you all about the art of parkour. It is quite graceful, non?" The entire room was silent and France wasn't sure just how to break the ice to these other nations…
That was, until, a particularly loud nation decided to break the ice for him. "That…" America started to say, "was…amazing! France, dude, you've got to show me how you did that!" The boisterous nation continued to exclaim praises at the top of his lungs. Francis closed his eyes and smiled while shaking his head. The young ones were always so full of energy…
A/N: Thanks for reading! Critiques are loved :)