First APH fanfic, but I'm pretty proud of it. Anyways, I really, really like the France (both the country and the character.) While learning about World War I in History class, this little fanfic sprang to mind, so I jotted it down in my notebook. Forty minutes of typing and a few revisions later, and voila! It's done :D It's a little angsty for France, but I think I kept him mostly in character. Enjoy, and please leave a review :D

-Ava


Twilight cast the world into shadows, the fire of sunset dying away into the indigo blue of dusk. The whole world seemed to slow down, savoring the lingering warmth before it died away until tomorrow.

France ran a hand through his long, sunshine hair, brushing the blond strands away from his blue eyes.

He released a pent up sigh, shaking his head in hopes of clearing it.

It was a beautiful evening, the very first stars twinkling feebly to life in the deep blue sky. France cast a wistful smile up at the, his heart aching, longing to fly up and join them. To be above the petty problems of bickering nations, above empty words and broken promises. Away from pain. Away from war.

He longed for that. To live far away from bloody battles, away from bombs and bones and hollow monuments built for those who died like dogs. Shallow reminders of the ones who gave it all, yet died like cattle- who gained nothing but pain and misery in return.

(The ones who died were the lucky ones. Their fight was already over.)

France had locked himself away for weeks when the surviving troops returned. Missing limbs, missing eyes, dead-eyed stares and haunted faces, they seemed like corpses- the walking, living, breathing dead.

He buries the memories of their faces with empty sex, a parade of nameless men and women, screams of pleasure when there was none, cries of completion when he was never truly complete. Empty lust, lovemaking that had no love within it.

And even then, it's not enough. The memories still haunt him. The blood invades his darkest dreams.

He still runs. He still hides. Fleeing from the blood of the slain, from the accusing stares of the survivors.

France turned his gaze from the sky to the ground, at the endless field of bright red poppies stretching out endlessly before him, swaying gently in the soft breeze, like a million beautiful maidens caught in the same slow dance.

France took a long deep breath of crisp night air- an action so many people took from granted.

But not him. No, he was going to live his life as if he would die at any moment, as if this precious gift would be snatched away in an instant- just like he knew it could.

Slowly, he released the breath, lashes brushing scruffy cheeks as he closed his azure eyes. His mind wandered to happier thoughts as he spread out in the cool green grass and lay among the flowers.