Russia and America drove along the icy paths of the Frigid Wasteland for a few hours. There wasn't much to talk about, but Alfred never really needed a reason to run his mouth.
"So they were coming at me like whoa, but I knocked them back with a boom, pow, and a zing!"
"Your vocabulary is as eloquent as always, dorogoy." Ivan rolled his eyes as he drove along. Other than small arguments and the like, the trip was pretty uneventful. At least until the icy ground turned into rocky sand and soil, causing the snowmobile to flip over, taking the two nations with it.
"Ow…" America groaned out as he surveyed his injuries.
"Stop complaining," Ivan sighed as he stood, trying to figure out where they were. But after seeing palm trees and simple houses, he smiled a bit, "I know where we are now, and it is not as bad as one would think."
An area where the comforts and architectures of the modern-era seemed to be at war with the ancient forests and grasslands of old, Osogbo was the city of Nigeria where people still believed in the olden gods of their ancestors.
In all his visits to this country, Ivan had never had time to visit this area (or rather, his friend would convince him that it wasn't worth his time), so it was an interesting experience to feel a clean breeze pass by. America, on the other hand, didn't share the optimism.
"Why the hell did you drag me to Africa, Russia?" America fumed as he and the large Slavic nation were walking in the Western region of the African continent.
"Are you implying that I was causing this?" Russia replied as he kept a close eye out for anything that seemed familiar.
"You probably did… With your Commie magic…" Alfred scoffed, removing his bomber-jacket as the heat of the sun blazing down was getting to him. As beads of sweat started to bead down, causing his undershirt to stick to his skin; firm muscles visible through the fabric, he complained again, "I'm dying here, you commie bastard! How are you not melting, you abominable snowman?" Ivan had removed his overcoat, a sleeveless undershirt revealing that the other nation wasn't fat like everyone thought, but built of strong, sturdy muscle… Like a bear. He still had his scarf wrapped around his neck, tighter than ever, as he spoke,
"Because I am used to coming down here to visit, da?" Russia nodded as he recognized the Niger River, "Germany and England come to this area a lot too, da?"
America was going to ask what the heck Russia was talking about when there was a beeping coming from his pocket. "Hm?" He reached in and pulled out his cell-phone that, due to the change in temperature, had started working again. "Hey! Finally, I can call someone to get me out of this hell-hole!"
"I really wish you wouldn't refer to it like that," Ivan sighed as a small bird rested on his shoulder, singing beautifully.
"Huh, what's this?" Alfred blinked as he saw that he had a message from 'Hat'. "Who is… Oh, Mattie!" He clicked it open and listened. After a few seconds, though, his whole frame went still due to hearing his brother's begging voice:
"Alfred, it's me Matthew. You know, Canada? Look, could you please come pick up Alexandr? I don't want to sound too needy or anything, but I'm kind of having a state of emergency right now… Actually, when you do come up here, could you take Ethan too?
My country is really unsafe right now… The temperature keeps descending and I still don't know what the cause is. Alfred, call me back as soon as possible. Ethan, what else do we have to burn? … Okay then, burn them-" The phone seemed to fizzle out, as if the signal was being blocked. But it was enough for America to call out,
"Ivan, I need to get to Canada, pronto!"
"I wonder why there aren't any people around…" Russia wondered out loud, Alfred barking out,
"Who cares! I need to go find my hat – I mean, Canada!" Ivan turned and began walking along the dusty road, seeming to ignore the blonde.
"After," Russia spoke firmly, "I find out if my friend is okay."
Finally, after hours of walking through the tropical heat, Ivan announced, "It has been decades since you've been to Nigeria, right Comrade?" Alfred groaned,
"This? This is where you took me? I haven't even stepped foot in Nicaragua –"
"Nigeria." Russia corrected.
"- Since that stupid Biafra incident!" Russia walked forward, being a bit unnerved by the lack of life.
"Well, I am not going to ignore this situation, especially since Nigeria is one of my friends. So, as your people would say, 'Stop bitching.'" You could tell that America wanted to make another comment, but he only rolled his eyes as they moved until they reached the entrance to a large forest. America looked and saw a sign (thankfully in English) that read:
"'Osun Sacred Grove: Home of the goddess Osun'? Geez, what is with these people?" He asked, but Ivan was already stepping inside, "Russia? Wait, what the hell?" He groaned as the Grove gave him a creepy air, "Damn, why do we have to go into the scary forest, huh? Probably full of demons… and witch-doctors… and ghosts!" He gulped before he ran after Russia, yelling, "Wait up!"
Osun Sacred Grove, Nigeria
The trees gently swaying in the dense forest created a calming air. The only sounds here were the chattering and calls of certain animals along with the flow of the river.
"I cannot understand why Nigeria never wanted me to come here. I feel surprisingly at peace…" Russia commented as they walked past the various shrines that dotted the ground along the river. America frowned, shivering as he followed closely behind the larger nation; the small statues and shrines causing his creep-out meter to go way up.
"Says you! I want to get the fuck out of here before some creepy, voodoo creature comes out of nowhere and kills us!" Ivan chuckled,
"Calm down… There is nothing here that would harm us." Just then, an icy growl sounded out from the bushes, Ivan and Alfred stopping their movement.
The growling increased, more creatures joining in before one of them padded through the leaf-work: a lion made of crystal and ice.
"You were saying?" America gulped as he brought out his hand-gun. Russia only sighed, taking out his pipe when more icy jungle cats prowled out. The head lion let out an almost mechanical roar, all the other cats bounding forward. America shot a round of bullets, stopping the first group of cats but making room for the second; the icy beasts charging forward and one pouncing towards Russia before he knocked it away with his pipe.
"Where the—" Alfred was cut off as another ice-tiger tried to jump on him, the blonde shooting it without a thought, "Hell do these things keep coming from?"
"Less talking," Ivan gritted back, slamming a crystal-lion away with his pipe, "More fighting!"
And fight they did, even as the number of enemies seemed to only increase, they fought on. But America, let his guard down, a crystal-jaguar roaring and swiping a paw towards his face.
"Oh, shit!" America gritted his teeth as he braced himself for a vicious blow. But, it never came. Blue eyes opened to see that the lion had been stopped in mid-air… Thanks to a large blade stabbing through its stomach. The still creature was whipped away, revealing a young woman with earth-toned skin. Her black hair was braided and pulled back into a pony-tail, the rest of it hidden beneath a blue beret decorated with a golden badge and a blue feather. The rest of her clothing was fairly simple: a blue dress-shirt, cargo-pants, and black leather boots; the uniform for her nation's female police force. She looked towards Russia with angry brown eyes before speaking,
"What's the purpose of having a phone," Nigeria (The Federal Republic of Nigeria, Njíkötá Óchíchìiwù Naíjíríà)- Chineme, "If you never answer it, oh?"
"Comrade!" Russia rushed over, taking the female nation in a hug before he added, "You are alive! This is wonderful news!" Nigeria rolled her eyes, hugging back for a moment before she called out,
"We can have the reunion later! Now we have to get these things out of here!" She shouted as another pack of icy wildcats rushed towards them. As he crushed one to the ground, Russia began talking again,
"You seem so angry, what is wrong Comrade?" Nigeria sheathed her machete behind her before bringing out her favorite weapon, a rifle that England had made for her during her civil war.
"What's wrong is that I've been calling you and your 'American Wife' for days, now! And neither of you have had the nerve—" A mechanical growl surged up beside her before she turned and quickly aimed, pulling the trigger…
…And a surge of flames shooting out.
Did we mention that due to England's still sore feelings to the African nation he made it so the rifle shot anything but bullets?
"Damn you Arthur…" She muttered, aiming at another creature and having a swarm of bubbles float towards it: exploding on impact. "Where was I, oh? Oh yes, neither of you answered me!"
"Why'd you need to call jungle-woman?" America asked, tossing one of the creatures away.
"Well," Nigeria sighed, "Your brother called me, saying something about if I could call Ivan so he could call you because, oh yes—" She was interrupted as she had to kick away another attacking creature, "You haven't been answering your phone!"
"Is he alright?" Alfred asked in a growing panic, Chineme shrugging her shoulders,
"To tell the truth, I've been having my own problems to deal with, now…"
"Like?" Ivan asked, the blank-haired woman shaking her head,
"Surely you had noticed? Most of this continent has been frozen over." She rolled up her sleeve, showing a frozen patch of skin, "I've had more than enough close encounters while trying to save my brothers and sisters… Not to mention…" She sighed, shooting another plume of flame when an enemy got too close. "I have no idea where my son's been taken to."
"Port Harcourt?" Russia asked, America gasping,
"THE OIL FIELD?", getting a cold stare from the other two nations; Ivan sighing,
"He is more than an oil field, America…" He should know, The Soviet Union had to protect the boy during Nigeria's civil war. After a few more minutes of fighting, the area seemed to finally calm down, Nigeria taking the opportunity to offer,
"I would be more than willing to offer up a helicopter to get to Canada, but I want to see if I can find my son first."
"What~?" America whined, "I need to go now!" While the three nations spoke, they didn't notice the ice soldier hidden in the frigid foliage; adjusting a crystal-crossbow.
"Dorogoy, don't be selfish!" Russia chided the younger male. He was about to agree when there was a quick sound, something cutting through the air, and then a sound of shattering glass. "No!" Ivan shouted as he saw that Nigeria had been hit. But the strange thing was, it seemed like she hadn't noticed the impact.
Then she gritted out, suddenly feeling the biting pain, "Damn it all to hell, now!" She reloaded her rifle before yelling, "Get out of here you two!"
"You're crazy, you will be killed!" Russia shouted, despite America all too willing to take the earth-toned woman's advice. Nigeria shook her head, her body slowly becoming numb,
"You have to go… As soon as I fall, this country will become a wasteland that those icy bastards will conquer…" She turned and looked towards the forests, her eyes slowly gazing over into icy blue as the ground grew cold. She nodded to herself and aimed her gun, "Go. Now!" Ivan still wanted to fight and see if they could all get out, but as the winds got colder by the second, he knew he couldn't go against the inevitable.
"Farewell my friend." He nodded before grabbing America's arm and running into the opposite direction, the blonde protesting that he could use his own legs. Nigeria shook her head before calling out,
"I know you all are out there, waiting on me to fall, oh!" She chuckled, making sure that she could keep her aim steady before she yelled out, "Allow me to give you a going away present!"
"Are we ready, now?" Nigeria called out as she stood in a firing line with her brothers and sisters, Ghana huffing,
"We were ready five minutes ago!", while Cameroon silently adjusted his glasses. Nigeria nodded before yelling,
"Then here we go: Fifty-Three Gun Salute!" They all adjusted their guns before, all at once, every African nation fired towards the direction of their adversaries.
Russia and America had heard the echoing explosion, but didn't stop until a sound akin to a thundering wave reached their ears. "Tell me that this country has earthquakes…" America gulped. When Russia shook his head, they both turned and saw the towering wave of ice and snow rushing towards them; swamping trees and wildlife with every inch.
"Shit!" Ivan shouted, reaching behind himself to pull out the snowmobile and hopped on, Alfred grabbing on right before he sped off in a desperate attempt to get out of the range of the wave; which seemed to be the entire country.
They nearly crashed into a tree on their way out of the Grove when America shouted, "Damn it Ivan, don't you know how to drive?"
"Now's not the time!" Russia gritted back as he carefully maneuvered through the lifeless city, the snow and ice constantly creeping a few meters away. "Could you make yourself useful?" Ivan shouted to Alfred, the blonde thinking for a moment before it clicked in his head.
"Oh yeah!" He brought out his gun and quickly began shooting at anything and everything that came after them as they sped through the disaster zone.
"Damn!" Russia gritted his teeth, suddenly speeding up.
"Whoa! Okay dude, what the hell?" America shouted but his voice faltered as he looked ahead. Two massive plates of ice were sliding closer and closer to each other, about to close the path. "Ivan, don't tell me you're about to-!"
Ivan put the snowmobile into the highest gear, Alfred screaming all the way as they moved forward.
It was close, they could practically feel the frigid cold of the ice against their cheeks.
The plates of ice crashed together with a resounding crack, the snowmobile carrying the two nations out of the freezing landmass that was once the African continent. They were both quiet as they drove across the frozen ocean, both knowing their next location:
Freaking oh my God, yes I use OC nations, alright? Ghana and Cameroon are fine and all (at least Cameroon is…) but Africa needs a bit more love. And Nigeria is, like, Cameroon's next door neighbor, so it isn't too far of a stretch. The Russia Nigeria friendship isn't something I made up. Back in the 60s when Nigeria had its Biafra-Nigeria Civil War, the only three groups that helped the Nigerian Forces out were Britain, Egypt, and the Soviet Union. Isn't history interesting?
The area where most of this level takes place is based on a real region as well.
Next chapter we go back to Prussia, Germany, and Romano to see what happened to Canada! Will the Maple-lover be alright? You just have to see for yourself.
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