Anyone up on their history may take note of the day Narroch and I – back for another of our epic co-written multi-chapter yaoi shenanigans – chose to begin posting this:

Today (in US time, at least – it's after midnight here in the UK) is 3rd September and, thus, 71 years to the day that the Second World War officially broke out, with Great Britain and France declaring war on Germany after the invasion by it and Russia of Poland on September 1st, 1939. Today seemed the most fitting day to make our debut given that this fanfic is very much embroiled with WWII and the historical implications of it (and the history that comes before it).

(Incidentally, everything over here in Britain is WWII-crazy at the moment because it's the 70th anniversary of the Battle of Britain and The Blitz, both of which took place in 1940. I was in London just this week and it's crazy up there – you'd think we'd never seen a war before…)

I don't want to chatter inanely too much up here; for now all I will say is that Narroch and I are very excited about this fic. Very.

If you know what 'Pangaea' is/means – and grasp the concept we're nudging at by selecting it as our title – you might understand why.




"There's going to be another war, isn't there?"

America was looking out of the window as he spoke – at the serene silver sky over London, daubed with pinks and violets, the dredges of the sunset before it drained completely behind Westminster. It was quiet out there, calm and settled, lulled and sleepy and in no mood for conflict. America pushed his shoulder-blades deeper into the sheets, burrowing his back further into England's bed, and sighed. It was comfortable here and America couldn't understand why England – Great Britain, to be perfectly accurate – was so keen to link arms with France and jump to Poland's defense the moment Germany so much as coughed in his direction; this was the sweet shell of Empire, the pearl-lined wall England had built around himself during his Golden Age, the precious shield he had managed to keep intact even after the Great War. America could feel England's comfort just by being in his presence, naturally-radiating resplendence even without using his stolen robes and rubies as props; ah, but he could feel his restlessness also, sense his worry, see the path he paced in his drawing room carpet just as far as the phone cord would stretch, worn down to the wood just as England himself was worn down to the bone. America almost felt that he could tell the time on England's furrowed brow, the troubled lines crossing his visage as constantly and consistently as the minute hand ticking towards their uncertain future.

"England?" he asked; he turned his head towards him just in time to see the hollow needle sink in.

"Hmm?" England didn't look up at him, distracted by the thin rubber tubing being held taut between his teeth, keeping pressure around his upper arm as an improvised tourniquet.

England allowed the tubing to fall away and slowly pulled back the plunger; his veins flooded and blood began to fill the empty syringe. America looked away again on hearing the older man give a small hiss.

"I said," America repeated, still looking away as he began to roll up his own sleeve, "there's going to be another war, isn't there?"

"If Germany doesn't start behaving himself, then yes." England drew out the needle and laid it carefully on the bedside table next to the glowing lamp before reaching for the First Aid kit and wrapping some gauze over the pinprick in the crook of his left arm. The entry point had already begun to swell over with a heavy bead of blood and it took several passes of the gauze around his elbow before the stain didn't show through. "France and I shall personally ensure that there is another war," England finished sternly, pulling the bandage tight before taping it off.

"See, that's what gets me," America replied, sitting up properly. "I sure don't see why you even care. I mean, jeez, Poland? Since when are you and France all buddy-buddy with that flake?"

"This is less to do with Poland and more to do with the fact that I already compromised Czechoslovakia in a misguided attempt to appease Germany and it appears to have had little effect – not to mention the fact that he's already annexed Austria—"

"So what do you care?" America interrupted. "God, let' em all get on with it. If they wanna kill each other, fine."

"America, the Great War was supposed to end all other wars; it was very much a failure, as was the League of Nations – if I might persuade you to not take offense – but I refuse to stand by and allow Germany to resume the kind of behavior that very much played its part in the outbreak of that war in 1914."

"So... you're gonna start another war in order to prevent the outbreak of war? Do you even hear how ridiculous that sounds?" America asked skeptically.

"I'd rather it not be you to point such basic illogicality out to me; this level of conflict can't be so easily reduced to that. Diplomacy has not worked and it is obvious from Germany's aggressive actions that he doesn't intend to stop with just Poland. We can't wait until he shows up on our doorsteps before we bare our teeth," England replied tersely; he had taken up the syringe again and was replacing the used needle with a clean one out of the packet. "I assure you that France and I have tried to reason with him but he's already taken that idiot Italy under his wing and he's in the final stages of alliances with Russia and Japan—"

"Whoa, weren't those three on our side last time?"

"Well, things change," England said bitterly.

America looked at him.

"Sometimes for the better," he said with a smile. He reached for England and took his empty hand, running his thumb over the back of England's palm. "You and I weren't on great terms one hundred years ago."

"You and I weren't on great terms thirty years ago, America."

"True. I guess that so-called "Great War" was good for something."

"Well, yes, when you actually decided to join the Allies at long last."

America shrugged and grinned.

"Better late than never," he said. He squeezed England's hand. "Well, I'm with you from the get-go this time, I promise." He looked at the dauntingly-large needle. "I-I mean, if we're... doing this..."


England held up the syringe to the window and looked at the tint of the late evening light shining horizontally through it, the blood washing against the circle of glass like the tide; even when it had settled it was not still, brighter glints and darker shadows in it, tiny fleets and miniature battles existing between the scarlet cells, England's wildest riches and poorest, filthiest streets, each of his rivers and castles and churches, his language and literature, his victories and defeats, everything that had shaped him into the man who now took hold of America's wrist and rubbed at it soothingly – pure liquid bloody history.

"If you are sure that you want it, of course," he went on, glancing back at America.

America nodded earnestly.

"Yes, yes, I want it," he said. "I swear this is what I want, England. We already discussed it—"

"I still want to give you the opportunity to change your mind," England interrupted calmly, looking again at the syringe holding his own blood, "now that the time is here. I could never force this on you, asking you to share my history within your own body..."

"I want it!" America insisted, leaning forward to make his point. "You share mine – even if you weren't present for some of it, even if some of my wars haven't involved you even as my ally, you're aware of everything that has ever happened to me, whether it bit me on the ass or not. I mean, I've known you practically my whole life but you... there's something like seven hundred years of your history that happened before I was freaking born!"

"More than that," England corrected mildly. "I lie about my age from time to time."

"Okay, well, whatever," America said dismissively. "The math ain't important. My point is that if we're gonna make this whole for-keeps grand alliance between us, I want it to be fair. You have my history so give me yours." He smiled again. "Let me have half the burden, okay?"

"My history is not a burden, thankyou very much," England retorted; but he shook his head with a smile of his own.

"Oh, I don't know," America teased. "What about that time you raised that kid you found – you know, the one that grew up to be an awesome hero that put you to shame?"

England smiled again and played along, enjoying the playful exchange that temporarily lessened the solemn atmosphere.

"Worst years of my life – but not a burden, necessarily. They make me feel better about my life now."

"Yeah, yeah, just 'cause I grew up to be better-looking than you..."

"That's what you may think. In all seriousness, America, are you absolutely sure about this?" England pressed, holding the syringe closer so America could see its crimson contents. "There will be no undoing it once it's done."

America shot him a bored look.

"We just covered this," he said. "Stick it in me already."

"To completely ignore your vulgar choice of words," England replied primly, "I just don't want you to feel obliged to agree to this out of some sense of duty. We can still form the Special Relationship without this level of... intimacy."

America blinked at him.

"Uh, England, newsflash but I kinda think we're way beyond worrying about certain levels of intimacy – and have been since 1917—"

"Don't deliberately misunderstand," England snapped. "This isn't like sexual intercourse and you know that. This... is the equivalent of me cracking open your skull, pouring in all of my historical memories, shaking them up with yours like a martini and then sewing you back up again." He swung the syringe, watching the blood flash behind the glass with the luster of rubies. "Furthermore, my blood – my history – is a particularly potent one. I am, even now, the largest empire that has ever existed in written records and I can tell you for a fact that I did not get to such a position by asking nicely. I have brought great powers like Spain, France and China to their knees. I am on the very verge of declaring war on Germany for a second time." He dangled the heavy syringe between his thumb and forefinger. "If you want this inside you, America, I will not hold back. I will give you everything – but know that I did warn you. There is destruction in me unlike any you have ever known."

"Hey, whoa, you suggested it and now you're trying to scare me off?" America gave a huffy sigh. "You wanna share your sob-story with me or not? Which is it, England?"

"I do want to share it with you," England said in a low voice. "I really do but... I do not want you to despise me for it. This could serve to drive a wedge between us just as we try to close the gap completely."

America gave an uneasy shrug.

"It's not like you're the only one with demons," he pointed out. "I've done some pretty awful stuff too in my oh-so-short time."

"Yes, but... I'm going to put my demons into you. I would understand if you didn't want them, especially since you have your own."

"But you know mine," America said. "Let me know yours." He lay back again and put out his arm, laying it wrist-up on England's lap. "I'm okay with consummating it like this. This will be stronger than any written document, than any promise to come to your aid or sell you weapons. If we're going to forge an alliance and call it a "Special Relationship", let's make it exactly that – and I can be no closer to you than if I share your scars and know what it took to make you what you are now. We're making it a blood pact as well as a promise."

He met England's gaze, looking up at his green eyes from the pillow.

"I wouldn't reject your history any more than I would reject you," he said gently. "I want it the way I want you. I'll love it the way I love you. Share it with me, England."

England merely gave another small shake of his head, seemingly defeated by the sincerity of the words and the seriousness in America's eyes.

"Very well," he said, putting aside the syringe once more to go into the First Aid kit for a bottle and a cotton swab. "I suppose you're old enough to make your own decisions."

"It's our decision," America persisted, his fingers dancing a little at the sensation of England rubbing alcohol in the crook of his upturned arm. "You're not conquering me – we're forming an alliance."

"Even so," England murmured, taking up the syringe again and giving a jab to the plunger to get out the air (a spray of blood spurted from the needle and spattered on the sheets), "history is written by the victors."

He held America's wrist still, thumb and forefinger pressing into the dips at the base of his hand, and lowered the needle his vein. America looked away again – not squeamish but still not really wanting to watch – as the needle sank slowly and decisively through the fragile skin and into him, cold and hard and unforgiving within the narrow margins of his vein. He took a handful of the blue bedsheets in his other hand, clutching numbly at them as he stared fixedly out of the window at the rapidly-darkening sky, trying to not make a sound as he felt the push on the plunger tremor through the glass and the needle and the blood begin to force itself into him, colliding and clouding with his own. He felt it more than he had expected to, a slow and cold oozing towards his wrist which made his toes curl in the confines of his socks as he willed himself to keep perfectly still – he could feel the swell of his vein as England pushed in more blood than he needed, feel the thud of his pulse as his heart-rate accelerated at the sensation of it, some kind of strange fear knotted with curiosity braided with want tied off with trust—

"All done." England slid the needle back out and put it on the table – there was still a little bit of blood sloshing in the syringe. "Good lad – you can look now."

America glanced sulkily at him, letting go of the sheets.

"I wasn't scared," he pouted.

"I know." England taped a roll of clean cotton padding to America's vein to stem the tiny flourish of blood welling at the needle-mark. "We have a moment before it enters your heart." He turned America's hand over and kissed it. "We'll know then if you made the right decision."

America gave a deep exhale and nodded, taking his hand back and draping his forearm across his chest. England buckled the tin First Aid kit shut and went to put it away; America turned his head on the pillow and watched him, looking over his glasses at him so that he was smudged and faded at the edges like an old oil painting. The way he was dressed offered no indication of the fact that he was on the verge of stepping up to the helm of another European war, dark slacks with a white button-down shirt and a long, loose cardigan colored like wine. His feet were bare so there was no regimental tap and click when he walked, only the soft pad of his soles on the carpet, much too quiet for someone threatening to march right up to Germany and stamp his boot into his face.

"You can't be talked out of it, can you?" America said; it was not a question on his part and he met England's gaze determinedly as he was given his attention. "The war, I mean."

"If Germany doesn't touch anyone else, there won't be a war," England replied. "France and I are hardly going to declare war on him for something that he hasn't done, after all."

America gave a sigh.

"But aren't you tired of fighting, England?"

England made his way back to the bed.

"When my history hits your heart, you'll know just how tired I am," he said. "But France and I made a pact with Poland to protect him if either Germany or Russia threatened him and I can hardly go back on my word when the time to make good on it comes." He bent and kissed America on the forehead. "It wouldn't be very heroic of me, would it?"

"No offense, England, but you have a bigger reputation as a villain," America murmured as England got onto the bed and lay down next to him. "Historically-speaking, I mean."

"Well, perhaps you've begun to rub off on me." England rested his head on America's chest, pressing his cheek to his heart. "Soon, now."

"Mm." America could feel the uncomfortable sensation begin in his breast even as he agreed; it was akin to a tight bubble or balloon swelling inside his heart, making the walls of it tingle and burn, and his breath came in shorter gasps. "Christ, England if this thing kills me—"

"You're going to be alright," England chided mildly, lifting his head again. "It's perfectly natural that the experience would be unpleasant. You're taking in every battle and war and sickness I have ever known at a condensed, accelerated pace. It might make you a little feverish but it's far quicker than sitting you down with a history book – and our alliance will be much stronger for it, too."

"...I guess."

America gave a grunt of discomfort, grimacing; as though the core in his heart had grown roots, he could feel tendrils of it beginning to spread all throughout him, upwards and downwards and taking over every vein and artery and capillary and organ, wrapping thickly around every bone and binding every joint. It wasn't agonizing, more a sort of dull, persistent ache that pressed against the walls of his skull and the backs of his eyes and into every last crevice of him, all of his being filled with someone else's suffering.

"It will be over soon," England promised, leaning over him.

America blinked up at him, England's image swaying to and fro before him as though a reflection in a river; he gave a bewildered nod and twisted in disquiet on the sheets, desperately wanting to believe him. His back had begun to hurt in a way that made it difficult to lie still, concentrated low at the base of his spine and making him constantly seek a position that stopped it aching so. He soon found his movements restricted, however, by England slithering between his legs and lying on top of him, acting like a dead weight.

"Hold on to me," he said quietly. "It's almost over – hold on to me as hard as you want but don't let go, do you understand?"

America gave another, more frantic, nod and wrapped his arms around England, cuddling him close and tight as he squeezed his eyes shut. Another sensation was beginning to overcome him, powerful, unavoidable, something like a huge wave that he could feel coming but couldn't possibly swim away from. The strange, shuddering pressure began at his feet and worked its way through him like an undercurrent. It hit his lungs, made him cough on the brine before surging through his heart with an icy jolt and then finally crested upwards into his brain; crashing with the tumbling force of a thousand images suddenly bursting behind his closed eyes, guns and knives and blood and bayonets and drums and mud and tattered flags and torn uniforms of all colors. The sound of it all caught up a moment later, a delayed promise of a musical score to accompany it, screams and shouts and the barking of orders, the fire of rifles and cannons and the roar of waves against the wooden underbellies of ships.

The collective memories of an entire culture, a whole history, flashed through America, revealing themselves to him only as compressed sensory archetypes packed in so tightly that, as they tried to make room for entire centuries, they physically lashed out at their new cage – only the bars were America's body rather than steel and he felt it as they ripped and settled into him, stretching to the very edges of his skin. He clutched tighter and tighter at England, his eyes wide and unseeing, panting in shallow panicked breaths as his hands contorted and gripped of their own accord, suddenly frantic to get beneath his cardigan and shirt and spread on his skin, to feel for his scars and unconsciously match them battle-by-battle. He held England like a shield, the body that had originally borne the brunt of all these wounds, and felt him curled over him as though he was protecting him from having to take these same injuries.

"Don't let go, America," England whispered. "I might not be able to pull you out."

"I won't, I won't," America sobbed, twisting his hands tighter into England's scarred skin. "Don't... don't you let go either!"

"I won't, I promise," England murmured.

America felt another kiss pressing reassurance on his brow in the final moment before the blackness drowned his senses and he passed out.

"There's going to be another war, isn't there?"

France's tone was far more resigned than America's had been; it was barely a question on his part, sighed out with a tired cynicism; he was a nation older than even England and with a history just as bloody, long involved in border feuds and disputes over who ruled what and when and how before England had even been anything worth wading across the Channel for. France had dealt with the entire continent for centuries and by now he could sense and accept the impending conflicts before they even started.

"It all depends on Germany, really," England replied blandly, not willing to voice agreement with France's unspoken certainty though he felt it too; the warmongering atmosphere was undeniable, an electrical current that set the hairs on his neck up. He cradled the phone between his cheek and shoulder as he reached across the heavy oak desk in the drawing room for the rolled-up map across the other side of it, the receiver wedged there still so that he could roll the map out with both hands. "I see no reason why we cannot handle this like gentlemen."

France gave a deep, rich, amused laugh at the other end of the crackling line.

"Ah, but," he said, "with you, dear Angleterre, that word always has such a double meaning. War is also a gentleman's pursuit, is it not? To send a written declaration of one's intent to bear arms against another is far more gentlemanly than to behave like a ruffian and simply bang down his door uninvited—"

"You mean as he intends to do with Poland," England interrupted. He was busy looking at the map; it was a full world diagram and he had spent an hour or so some nights ago attending to it with the design of Earth at present, cross-hatching Germany and Italy in red and marking Japan and Russia with dubious red question marks, outlining annexed nations Austria and Czechoslovakia in blue and cross-hatching himself, France, America and Canada in green. He had also marked China with green – it was a well-known fact by now that China had been fighting with Japan since 1935, although he wasn't sure if that automatically made China an Ally.

"What of Russia?" England asked, tracing his finger idly over the question mark.

"I am unsure," France admitted. "I know he has visited Germany's house several times but I do not know if any kind of alliance has been forged." There was a pause. "I remain surprised that he will perhaps choose to side with someone who has proposed an alliance with China's enemy. There is much bitterness between China and Japan."

"Whichever side Russia picks, I'd rather we not be forced to rely on him," England muttered. "Not after last time. If America hadn't joined us—"

"If Amérique had not joined us and you two had not finally burned off your intolerable sexual tension within the so very romantic confines of a tank, I would still be listening to your feebly-disguised complaints that he is ungrateful and moronic and most certainly not to your liking," France cut in boredly; though England was certain he was sporting an amused grin nonetheless. He never failed to bring it up, thoroughly entertained by how easily and early on he detected England's pathetic attempt at denial. "Regardless, now that you have him so very firmly attached to you at the hip, might I be correct in surmising that he will be joining us should we decide to take action against Germany?"

"Yes, he has given me his word. I suppose I can expect the same from Canada?"

"Certainement, Angleterre." There was another pause on France's end of the line. "If you do not mind my inquiring, where is dear Amérique? Everything seems so very quiet."

England let go of the map, letting it snap back into a cylinder, and straightened, taking the phone in his hand once more.

"He's asleep," he said after a moment's consideration. "He was tired."

It wasn't exactly a lie, more like a necessary omission; the earlier procedure to share England's history had knocked America out and it didn't seem as though he was going to be waking any time soon, settled in a feverish slumber with sweat shining on his skin and his eyes flickering like an old film behind his closed lids. England could imagine what he was seeing, going over his own memories in his mind and inwardly cringing at what he knew he had put him through. But the pain was necessary: blood pacts couldn't be formed without breaking skin, without breaking barriers. England had made him as comfortable as possible, pulling the sheets over him, taking off his glasses and putting a cool, damp cloth on his forehead before leaving him to come downstairs and call France. There was nothing else he could do for him at the moment – that much history needed time to settle in a body unaccustomed to holding its expanse. It might take days, perhaps even weeks, for America to get used to it.

"Ah, no doubt you have been working him to the bone," France drawled, "in more ways than one."

"I hardly think that's any of your business," England replied coolly.

"Perhaps, but I would like to hope that he will be in a condition to assist us in the coming days nonetheless."

England hesitated. He wasn't sure if France was exaggerating even the level of perversion he usually applied to his speculations about England's wildly-inaccurate sex life or if... he was genuinely taking a stab at a suspicion. Certainly what England had just shared with America had taken more out of him than, say, a round of bondage-play complete with handcuffs and riding crop (which had never ever happened) would have – but it remained that England didn't know quite which of these options France was nudging at. England knew better than a lot of people that France could actually be reasonably intelligent from time to time (usually when he wanted something – some sweet piece of ass, more often than not – but still).

"He will be, I assure you," England eventually replied, his voice stiff; he had, he felt, exhausted his patience with France for tonight. "Tomorrow, then?"

"Indeed; I greatly anticipate the pleasure," France said dryly. "Au revoir, mon ami."

He put down the phone without waiting for England to return a goodbye, leaving him with the click and buzz telltale-tune of having been hung-up on. England tutted and slammed the receiver back down with more force than was necessary, flopping sideways into the plush armchair at the desk and settling with his legs crossed and hooked over one of the carved wooden arms and his back curved over the other. He gave a deep, tired sigh and rubbed at his forehead to soothe the beginnings of a headache.

Yes. Yes, there was going to be a war. It was not a case of 'if' but rather one of 'when' – and the 'when' was coming soon. He could feel it, advancing fast and low like thunder rolling, as obvious as coming storms he had seen galloping like wild horses across America's wide open plains. He was not afraid, not angry – but rather weary, having known for years that it was eventually going to come to this. Each passing day for over twenty years, Germany had licked his wounds and pieced together his pride again, all the while despising those who had blamed him wholly for the Great War. France and England had done their very best to leave him friendless and penniless and worthless, to punish him, to put him back in his place and prove that he was in no position to push himself forward when Europe was under their thumbs instead. Oh, England had known there was going to be another war. Even back then. He knew how it felt to come back from subjugation like that with a vengeance. The promise had been weaved into the loops of his own signature on the armistice, the curves of France's, the lines of Germany's—

But not in America's.

He couldn't protect America. He knew that. Whether he took America into the war at his side from its outbreak or whether he left him alone until he made his own decision to join in, he couldn't keep him out of it. He knew it even if he didn't like it – so he had tried something else instead. Proposing an alliance that was without political or economic motivation – merely a promise that they would always be allies no matter the conflict – benefited them both and opened America up to the idea that England didn't just want him for his tanks and guns and vast resources; the immense power bestowed upon him through the iron baptism of industrialism. Giving America his history – over a millennium of bloodshed that America himself would never have to personally experience – was like an inoculation. With that kind of borrowed experience, America could fight in an old European war like this as another old European nation. The blood wouldn't bother him and, when it was all over, he would give a cynical shrug and sign the peace-papers and know that there would be another. He was far from innocent to begin with but he'd never known a war longer than a few years, never known what it felt like to carry centuries of blood and alliances and vendettas that would cycle around each other until everything was entangled.


England reached into the pocket of his cardigan and took out the glass syringe, tipping it this way and that. What little remained of his blood in it spiraled down the tube with every motion. He had taken too much from himself and hadn't wanted to force all of it into America's body for the sake of waste not, want not. Really, he hadn't wanted to put it into America's body at all but...

It would be worth it if it saved him.

England pulled out the plunger, holding the syringe open like a test-tube, and swung his legs over the arm of the chair so that he was sitting in it properly. He rolled out the map again and pinned it first with his elbows and then the first two paper weights that came to his hand, looking down at it critically with the syringe suspended at half-mast over it. It was an old map, made at the very height of England's power so that over a third of it was marked with the abbreviated B.E. – British Empire.

He rested his chin on one hand and tilted the other just enough to send a single drop of blood threading downwards onto the paper, calculating it close enough that it hit Great Britain and spattered like a star over England and into the frayed edges of Wales and Scotland.

Almost unconsciously he began to drift his hand leftwards, trailing tiny splashes over Ireland and into the Atlantic, slowly-but-surely making his pebbled way across the faded blue ink towards the United States—


England jumped violently at the sound of America's voice coming from nowhere, dropping the syringe in shock; it hit the map, rolled off the edge of the desk and went spinning to the hard-wood floor, where it shattered and the last few beads of blood scattered themselves over the boards. Putting his hand to his hammering heart, England turned towards America, who was standing behind him with the whole duvet pulled around him like a heavy cloak – he was very white and still sweating, his gold hair sticking to his forehead, and was squinting short-sightedly at the map.

"Wh-what are you... doing?" he asked, stepping closer.

"Nothing." England stood abruptly, composing himself. "Nothing at all. I was just coming to bed – which is really where you ought to be, my boy."

"I know, I..." America trailed off, pausing confusedly. "I was just... looking for you... I-I wondered where you'd gone..."

"Phone call," England replied shortly, brushing the paperweights off the map and letting it roll shut before America could get close enough to see it in detail even without his glasses. "I was talking to France."

"About the war?"

"Yes, about the war." England patted America's back through the thick blue bed-sheet clutched around his body. "Come on, let's take you back to bed. I expect you're not feeling very well."

America nodded and allowed himself to be steered back towards the door of the drawing room; England was relieved that he wasn't really in his right mind at the moment and thus hadn't insisted on seeing the map. Thanks to his dropping the syringe, there was a rough arc of blood cutting through the United States and Canada which doubled back on itself, slicing a clean, thin red line from the rim of the glass cylinder back across the Atlantic, through the South of Ireland, Wales, England, over the English Channel and into France before fading off a centimeter or so into Italy.

It had been an accident but he still didn't want America to see it. Even for a less superstitious country than himself, the bloody pattern was ominous.

He decided that he would clean up the broken syringe in the morning as he leaned back into the room after ushering America out; his hand on the light switch, he glanced briefly at the clock.

It was eleven minutes after midnight on September 1st, 1939.

Hope you enjoyed what is very much the calm before the storm!

I am very glad that Narroch and I are finally writing a proper multi-chapter Hetalia fanfic together. This makes our third project of what one might call "epic" proportions (the first being Small Print for the Teen Titans section and the second being Poison Apple for the Death Note section – The Monster You Made, also for the Death Note section, was something of a failure that sort of lost momentum before it got off the ground…) and I really feel it to be the most appropriate. We got into this fandom together during my year abroad in the United States (after both claiming to hate it, going home and watching ALL OF IT separately and then guiltily admitting to it about a month later) and we have both always been highly amused by the immense popularity (due to its being almost-canon) of the USAxUK pairing, given that they are, respectively, our countries. Personally I sprang onto that bandwagon quite a while ago, USUK being more-or-less the only pairing I have written – but I always maintained that I wanted Narroch and I to write something of grand proportions like Poison Apple for Hetalia and for the USUK pairing so that we might draw on our own cultural differences, even things as menial as the differences in our spelling (favourite vs favorite) and the words we use for things (pavement vs sidewalk), and feed them into our portrayal of Alfred and Arthur's relationship. I almost feel that it would be a complete waste of our being legit-American-and-British if we didn't write this pairing!

ANYWAY, enough justification! This fic… is mostly USUK/UKUS; but it features a few side-pairings. Franada should be obvious – GerIta will also appear, alongside AusHung. We're still trying to work out details of other pairings – there won't be room for some and others (like one of my favourites, Giripan) just aren't plausible in a 1940s setting. We really hope we don't put anyone off with our choice of pairings – I know this fandom can be quite divided on who goes with who when and so forth…

I don't know how often updates will be but we'll try not to have too long between chapters! Hope you come back for the next one! ^-^

RobinRocks and Narroch


P.S: Anyone who came here after my shameless plug on the latest chapter of A is For, thankyou very much and I hope you enjoyed it! On that note… you may be wondering why I haven't updated A is For today. The truth is that I am afraid I didn't manage to get the next chapter finished in time for today because I was Englanding (again) in London and so I think it will be Sunday like last week. Hope you can wait another day or so! Sorry – and soon, I promise!