Disclaimer: I don't own TV Tropes or Axis Powers Hetalia or any of its associated fictional characters or locations.
This is based on real-life events. The states are based on TV Tropes Useful notes and real life, exaggerated to ridiculous levels. Please, if you have it, occasionally spare a dollar or two for those whose lives are devastated by natural disasters.
But this one mainly goes out to all readers who are, or were, affected by these floods, or any other natural disaster. The rest of the world is still thinking about you, looking out for you.
NEVER LOSE HOPE.
The Flooding of the Sun-Burnt Country
When the Waters Rose
18th December 2010
England heard a knock. He looked up from his cup of tea. "Who could that be, at this time of night?"
"Maybe it's Australia," suggested Tasmania mildly. She sat across him, a neatly, if old-fashioned dressed, spectacled young woman with the palest complexion out of all Australia's six states and two territories. Out of all of them, she was the most like him in regards to personality, and ergo the sanest. She sometimes came over to England's house for a cup of tea. She was holding a small bundle of his books from the last century. They each had a collection of antique literary items they would trade sometimes. They were the only thing he would lend the sweet, albeit fumbling and occasionally clumsy, girl. Anything else, she might break.
England stood up and opened the door. He sighed. "Hello, Australia."
"G'day, England. Came to find Tazzy," grinned the cheerful, sun-weathered bloke. His koala gnashed its teeth at England. Australia peered over England's shoulder and grinned at Tasmania. "Tazzy, there y'are. Wanna come home now? The others miss you."
"They were ignoring me," she told him in a quiet, depressed tone.
"They missed you so much that they came over to bring ya back."
"See, now you're ignoring… Sorry?" asked Tasmania.
"What?" asked England. "No, do not say that you brought them-"
"HEY, ENGLAND! LET US IN!" several voices called with all the tact of several large machine guns.
"Oh, god, why?" England groaned, rubbing his forehead, as his home was invaded by the other four states and two territories, plus the country to which they all belonged.
"I really think this wall is too blank," murmured a woman with a crucifix. "I think I'm going to paint a-"
"Tasmania, darling, why'd you run off like that?" Victoria said as he flounced in, wearing a pair of skinny jeans and a trendy shirt. He air-kissed Tasmania. The woman with the crucifix sighed and got to work.
"Because you were ignoring me."
"At least they know you're there," the woman with the crucifix said, painting England's wall, completely without permission. "Nobody even realises South Australia's here."
"Well, don't do it again, naughty," Victoria smiled, withdrawing. Tasmania started when she saw that he had one of England's most valuable books stuffed down his shirt.
"Victoria-" She was ignored, but someone else had already stopped Victoria.
"Now, see here," began a short, chubby man in a suit, speaking with a pompous accent. "That book belongs to that young lady."
"Oh, be quiet, Cranberry."
"I told you, it's Canberra! My capital, and yours, actually, is Canberra! Not Cranberry. And you'll refer to me as ACT or Australian Capital Territory."
"You're not even a state," Victoria said snobbishly.
"But I'm still more important than you."
"Yeah, Cranberry's right," Australia butted in. ACT wilted slightly at the nickname. "On both counts. Fair go, Vicky, give the book back."
'Vicky' sighed. "Fine." He withdrew the book and threw it at Tasmania, who caught it gently. It wasn't damaged. Melodramatically, he laid a hand over his forehead. "I think, with all this exertion, I'm getting a little faint… I'm just going to get a little ice tea, darlings, shouldn't be too hard here… Ice is everywhere and so is tea." With that, he flounced out of the room.
"Thankyou, old chap," Canberra thanked Australia.
"No worries," the other said, looking around when he realised his koala was gone. "Where's me…"
"GET IT OFF ME!" shouted England. Australia's koala was trying to gnaw off his head.
"Oh, he's harmless," Australia said as he coaxed the small, grey, furry animal off England. "Come on, you don't wanna eat that, you don't know where it's been."
While England was recovering, someone walked up and booted him in the shoulder. "Sorry, mate, didn't see you there." This was said in distinctly sarcastic Aussie tones, the like of which only came from Western Australia. He wore a grubby old singlet under a fluorescent construction vest, with an equally grubby pair of jeans and some boots. The scrawny, extremely tanned young man had a pickaxe slung over one shoulder, and occasionally patted the black swan which was following him around.
"Oh, you aren't still upset over the referendum in the thirties last century, are you?" snapped England. "I know you wanted to succeed, but it was a stupid thing to do."
"Not giving you any trouble, is he?" asked someone with the slightest Australian accent. A man dressed in a suit had come over, looking like WA but older and more mature. He was also physically buffer, with a lock of hair in the front of his head which arced identically proportionate to how the Sydney Opera House did. New South Wales was particularly proud of the Opera House.
"Bugger off, Wales-ey," WA snapped to the other.
"Come along, WA, let's go stop Victoria from stealing the crown again." With that, the two wandered off. They, being the first two states of Australia, looked exactly like England, except tan and more buff. Once, due to a particularly large influx of English immigrants, Western Australia had gotten much paler, and many had mistaken him for England. He had been particularly furious about that, given his long grudge against the nation. They were quickly replaced by a dark-skinned, Aboriginal woman wearing shorts and a shirt. She grinned at him.
"No, Northern Territory," England groaned. "I won't."
"Northy isn't causin' ya too much trouble, is she?" asked Australia.
"I was just gonna challenge him to a drinking contest," NT announced cheerfully, holding out a bottle of beer.
"It's because ya always lose, isn't it?" asked the woman. Despite her frame, slighter than England's, and gender, she could outdrink him any day of the week. No matter how much the woman drank, she never actually got drunk.
"Oi, Northy, a bit of help over here!" called another woman; Queensland. She wore a bright yellow sundress and straw hat. She was in the habit of taking care of baby crocodiles whose mothers hadn't been able to take care of them. Unfortunately, she tended to take care of them too long so, sometimes, one of them would bite her, like the arm-long one was doing now. Queensland was more or less ignoring the small reptile.
"Not again," NT laughed before proceeding to wrestle it into submission. "How come you never ask WA to help? He has crocs, right?"
"Yeah, but I'm always too busy mining to provide money for you lazy buggers to play with them," the surly state snapped. "Maybe if you pulled your own weight-"
Just then, a strange expression came over his face. He clapped a hand to his mouth. The swan squawked in concern as he rushed into the bathroom and began vomiting.
"You right there, Westie?" asked Australia, before beginning to cough. At first it was a mild tickle, but then it grew into a phlegmatic fit. England hurriedly gave him a handkerchief. It was soon coated with clear phlegm. After a moment, WA came back down again, the other states watching him.
"Stop it, you lot, I'm fine. It's just a bit of flooding in the Gascoyne."
"Oh, flooding," England sighed, relieved. Not that he had been worried, of course. "That's all? A bit of rain won't hurt you. I should know."
"At least we've discovered the sun," muttered WA resentfully before running back to be sick once more. After that, he had to be carried home, between NSW and NT. Australia had been coughing, on and off, quite badly. He, his states and his territories, left, without requesting for help. England knew that Australia would be able to handle it, though.
He blinked as he saw that one of the states had been forgotten. "Um… South Australia?"
The woman looked around form her mural, blinking. "They left without me, didn't they?"
England nodded. She sighed, left. England saw that she had painted a large map of Australia, slightly out of proportion. All but Southern Australia were tiny. He smiled, shook his head. He then found that Victoria had stolen one of his vases.
Western Australia was in a horrible mood for the rest of the week. They all lived in Australia's house together, and the others began avoiding WA as the flooding got worse. He would refuse all medical aid unless he was physically unable to refuse their nursing. He would absolutely not let doctors check him out. This was because, in his heart, Western Australia was terrified that they would find out that he could no longer move his right hand, and then they wouldn't allow him to work any more. Then what would he be?
When he was well enough, he would wander about in a terrible mood. Due to his hand, he once hurled his axe through a window when SA was in the room, not noticing her. Australia, who was the only one who (sometimes) noticed that the Southern state was alive, made her pay for it. In revenge, she painted WA's black swan pink. He wasn't happy.
Australia, of course, would occasionally come down with a cough. When asked, he would say that he was fine, and was just annoyed that he wouldn't be able to enjoy as many "good Aussie mangoes and bananas" as usual, as the farms which grew them had been in the affected region.
Australia was having a lazy morning, sleeping in after a night of partying and fireworks. Queensland had provided most of the fireworks, though she'd been a bit ill. She did the best fireworks. However, this morning was interrupted when he woke and found himself unable to breath. He took in a breath only to cough it out again, with more of the clear phlegm. It reached down into his lungs, choking him, drowning him in his own body.
Perhaps feeling his pain, the door burst open and NT and SA ran inside. They helped him to breathe until he was able to ask, "We-Western Australia?"
"He's still sick," NT said with a gravity she normally didn't have. "But it isn't him."
Queensland was barely able to join in the Christmas festivities. Western Australia was in as bad a condition. Australia was wracked by a terrible cough as two of his states, his two largest states, suffered. Christmas that year was hardly the joyous event it usually was.
By the New Year, Queensland was bedridden. As the days passed she grew unable to move or speak. All she could do was lie there, her tan slowly drawing away from her skin, leaving her pale and wan. By the tenth of January they found her with blue lips, only restored to consciousness when pressure from a machine forced oxygen into lungs too weak and drenched to move on their own. She couldn't breathe alone by the tenth of January, and had to draw in rattling, watery breaths through an oxygen mask. The nation's best doctors were called in to help her, but they could do nothing. Their tests revealed that Queensland had received brain damage from the water; if she woke, she would need to relearn how to walk and talk properly. Australia, who grew weaker with Queensland and, to a lesser extent, Western Australia, was at the mercy of nature.
WA was ill, but while he was more or less constant, all saw how Queensland sickened. Even he took a turn sitting at her bedside, trying to stop her drowning in her own body. She grew weaker and weaker. Her land was being covered in water, over three quarters of it weighed down by the constant rain. She was fading, and there was nothing the other states could do about it.
Well, there was something.
On January the 12th, NSW and SA stood by Queensland's bed.
"Queensland?" began NSW softly, taking her hand. SA took her other one. "I don't know if you can hear us right now, but we'll say it anyway. SA and I are giving you something to help ease the troubles." He and SA each laid a cheque on her bed. Both read, a million dollars. "This won't bring stop the rain. This won't take back the water. This won't bring back the building, the property. This won't bring back the people and animals' whose lives are affected, even lost, because of this. But, hopefully, it will make a few people's lives a bit easier. We haven't forgotten you, and we're all doing everything we can for you."
They sat with Queensland for a bit longer. Her hand had grown cold and clammy, almost as if the water that was everywhere was trying to escape through her skin. They eventually left.
WA had been waiting in the room next, the place he'd been ordered to stay and recuperate after Australia made him allow the Doctors to inspect him. They revealed, with various scans, that his cortex was damaged. They weren't sure if he could learn to use his right hand again or not. It was his sour luck that his state hadn't been born with enough lefties to be one himself.
Next to Queensland, he watched her for a moment before sitting down. Awkwardly, he drew a small, wrinkled piece of paper from his jeans pocket. On it, in clumsy, childlike letters, he painstakingly wrote, ONE MILLION DOLLARS. He set it beside the other two, resting a moment before stumbling back into his room, where his exertions were rewarded with an hour with his face halfway down the toilet.
It was eventually Australia who came in and gently lifted the exhausted figure back to bed, despite his protestations that he could walk. The koala helped him clean up and Australia made sure Western Australia took his medication, even though they knew it would be, at best, a temporary relief. With that done, he went into the next room, sat tiredly on a chair beside the prone figure. He began coughing, one of the worst fits he'd had yet. The koala pawed his cheek gently, concerned. Australia wiped the spittle from his cheek and grinned.
"Don't worry, mate," he said to the koala weakly. "I'll pull through. We all will."
Then he began to cough again.