It had been a hero's funeral with Canada standing strong among the rest of the nations. By his and England's permission the event was being broadcasted; America's country deserved the right to mourn as well.
He was buried in DC. The ceremony held at the National Mall. He was buried under a dogwood tree- a broken chain on his gravestone. He was a loss to the family. Their entire family of nations.
His resting spot was in a special area of the cemetery. England wasn't looking up at all; he hadn't let anyone meet his gaze. His shoulders hadn't stopped shaking. Canada's hand went to England's back, rubbing gently as he leaned over and whispered, "He was very brave, he died a hero. That's how he would have wanted to die."
"But he shouldn't have had to die," England shook, "I should have stopped his foolish plan. I should have told him no. I was his father and I let him down! I let him get killed." Canada frowned, his other arm wrapping around England's shoulder, pulling him in close.
"This isn't your fault," Canada whispered, hugging him.
"I miss him… I miss him so much already."
"So do I," Canada squeezed gently, "So do I."
A month had passed since America's death. Canada was going visiting the grave of his late brother, a daily habit he knew he had to break eventually. But eventually could wait. He had fresh roses in his arms, America's favorite flower. The red petals rested against the brown dirt in front of the gravestone and he allowed a small smile to grace his lips, "So, we have a meeting tomorrow." He spoke softly, "Though it's never the same without you. It's a lot quieter, for one," he tried to laugh just a little.
The meetings had been very quiet. Very short too. There weren't as many interruptions since people just wanted to get out of the room as quick as possible. To top it all off, England was even shorter tempered than usual. The nations collectively decided it wouldn't be good to upset him any further.
There was also a confusion that people didn't want to delve into- though Canada felt that there were a few nations who had an idea; namely the older nations who had been around longer. No human had ever murdered a nation before. What was going to be the result? Where did America's power go? It hadn't returned to the nation. Canada hadn't been the one to kill the murderer, so he didn't get the power. It just vanished it seemed. This had been a source of concern and worry for some nations and curiosity for the others. "I just wish we knew…" he said softly. "It's really worrying all of us."
He sat down next to the grave, looking at the headstone that read:
"Alfred F. Jones
United States of America
Brother. Son. Friend. Nation. Hero."
The bottom line dated his discovery and his death.
The tear rolled down his cheek, his memory a painful reminder as to why America was underground now. "It should have been me." He whispered, "Why? Why did you have to be the hero?" Guilt. That's what he felt too. He was guilty for leading his brother to his death.
He looked down at his fingers. They had healed quickly but the memory of the pain was still there. His fingers had been broken and he had cried out and his brother had stopped struggling. "Fuck…" He whispered. He felt anger. Frustration. "Fuck." All he wanted was his brother back. Was that really so much to ask for? He just wanted his brother. "Hey… when… when we-" he stopped for a moment. That phrase "When we meet again"… that didn't apply here. They were nations. Unless someone murdered Canada too… he was never going to meet his brother again.
There was a sharp tug at his heart at that realization. Hot tears surged. Humans found comfort in the loss of loved ones when they thought about the future. When they thought about meeting them in the afterlife. But nations didn't die. There was no meeting. "No…" he swallowed hard. Did England realize this? They were never going to see America again. He was never going see America smile again or eat a hamburger again or drink a milkshake or make a stupid comment or interrupt someone or drink a coffee or toss a football or hit a baseball again… he was never going to meet his next boss- he was never going to see what countries came next. America was gone. He was completely gone.
No… he wasn't completely gone. America as a country still existed. They as nations just had to make sure it stayed that way. A world without the United States… Canada just wanted to think of that as a bad thing. The country now was something he held close to his heart- it was their reminder. No one would ever forget Alfred F. Jones.
Canada refused to let anyone forget.
It was another world meeting. There had been a number of them in the following few months after America had been killed. And despite that, this one wasn't much lighter than the previous ones. There was still the overbearing mourning that had a presence among the group of nations. They tried to be light, keeping the conversations quick and short. Remembering America as a bright man with a blazing spirit.
They tried to minimize the sorrow, "He wouldn't want us to be sad," Italy had pointed out, trying to help. England could only offer a weak smile before his gaze went right back to his hands and the pen between his fingers.
Canada was being noticed now. Because his brother died for him. That's why. He had gone through something that "no one should ever have to go through, Mathieu." He was hardly ever forgotten anymore; people were constantly asking him for his opinions. Canada had always imagined the day he would be noticed and recognized as much as his brother was. That day was now here, though his mind had pictured it very differently.
"Does anyone else have any other business to discuss?" It was only 11:30. The meeting had started at nine and normally they would be getting ready for a lunch break having only gone through half the agenda. But now Germany was closing out the meeting since everyone had finished talking. Canada glanced around the room. People were silent.
"Matthew," there was a small voice. Canada's eyes went to Italy. Italy… the man had been a surprising support system through all this for him. Maybe it was because he too had a brother? An overbearing, loud mouth, inappropriate brother who was loved anyway.
"Happy birthday." There was a pause. Canada blinked. Oh. It was July 1st. He gulped. Three days from now it would be America's birthday. There was a silence in the room. He had completely forgotten his own birthday. The months had just… blended together.
"Thank you, Feliciano."
"I think, I think Alfred knew he wasn't going to be here. Cause he asked me to give you this," Italy pulled out a small wrapped gift and handed it to Canada, "It was before that meeting… he said 'Feli, I don't know what it is, but I don't have a really good feeling and I can't find Matthew anywhere… After the meeting I'm going to look for him. I got him a really cool gift and I don't want him to die before he gets it. Can you keep it safe for me?' and I said yes."
Canada's hands were shaking. He took the gift from Italy and pulled it close. With trembling hands he unwrapped it- it was an album. A photo album. He opened it, pictures of the two of them since they were able to take pictures. His brother's smiling face… his own (sometimes disgruntled) expression. His shoulders began to quiver. He remembered when each photo was taken. They had been really, really small events but they now meant so much.
"He also had a card," With still unsteady hands the Canadian took the card. He opened it slowly. The card had a quirky joke on its cover with a quirky punch line.
Wow! Can you believe it's been over two hundred years? Holy crap Matthew! We're almost as old as that old fart Arthur! Here's to another two hundred years of raising hell!
-Alfred F. Jones- America, FUCK YEAH!
And he held the card with cold and clammy hands, reading and rereading the optimistic words before breaking down into heavy, broken sobs.
Their next meeting was three days later. They began with a small remembrance of America, exchanging funny stories about the boy they had known. He wasn't his nation's politics to any of them anymore. He was just America. The hero-loving, hamburger-eating man they all loved in some way. Nothing more and certainly nothing less.
There had been a lull in the conversation as they were attempting to transition from remembrance to business when there was a click. The door was being opened. There was a tension that blanketed the room. No one was allowed in their meetings after what had happened and no one was missing.
There was a small knock on the door that seemed to be there as an afterthought.
"…Come in." Germany's voice was deep, more intimidating than it had been for a long time, but the person wasn't deterred. The door opened and in the door stood a girl. She had brownish hair, short and about chin length. She was wearing a small top that just covered her assets with a similar, khaki-colored skirt. Her jacket was almost identical to the one America had worn and her boots went to mid-calf. Her hair was held out of her eyes with red hair clips and a star necklace hung around her neck.
"Um… is this the world meeting?" She was quiet. She sounded timid. Germany stiffened and crossed his arms.
"And who are you?"
At the question her eyes brightened, she lit up with confidence as she puffed her chest out proudly and declared:
A/N: So this is the very last part. Thank you all so much for coming on this journey with me! I have two plot ideas in the making; one is a comedy- a crossover between Hetalia and Ouran High School Host Club and the other another drama. Though I have also been thinking of a sequel to this. If anyone is interested, please say so! Thank you so much again for the kind reviews and the awesomeness of you all!