Ruling was a bore sometimes. There were occasions where it would be entertaining, like when you attended balls that were genuinely fun, or when you get to decide battle plans and such. But this was not one of those times. There were no wars as of right now and the next ball was scheduled for four days. But Francis was planning that one…
Arthur sighed, sitting in his on the throne in the throne room, which was basically just a long hallway with a door on one end and the throne on the other. This was just the room where the people of the kingdom would come to him and ask him to help fix one of their many problems.
But it seemed that no one needed his help today, so he was stuck just sitting there. It was hard being king sometimes, but there were times where he would just prefer to be doing something else.
King Arthur Kirkland… It just sounded too formal sometimes…
Arthur was snapped out of his thoughts when his page, Peter, ran into the room. It was probably to announce that someone was coming. Arthur had no doubt that it was Francis coming to pay him a visit or something.
"King Arthur," Peter sighed irritably. It was well known that the two hated each other, so they never really treated each other with respect. "There's actually someone here of some importance that wants to talk to you."
"Yeah?" Arthur placed his hand in his hand and his elbow on the arm of the chair. "Who is it, Francis?"
"Nah, that git's not here," Peter stated.
"Then, who?" Arthur asked half-heartedly, not really caring.
"A prince of one of your territories," Peter said and Arthur's interest suddenly piqued.
"Which one?" Arthur lifted his head off his hand.
"Larkin," Peter informed.
"Larkin…" Arthur had to think for a moment which one that was. "Isn't that the one where I've been getting news of rebellion?"
"Yep, that's the one," Peter nodded.
What could he be wanting? Arthur drummed his fingers on the arm of the throne. He had never met the appointed prince of that territory. Arthur had decided that it would be best for all of the territories in his empire had popular sovereignty over who would be their spokesperson, or prince/princess if you were to put it that way. The prince or princess really wouldn't be able to make decisions, but it did put most of the territories at ease knowing they had a voice.
The prince of Larkin was chosen pretty young, which surprised Arthur. He was 13, when Arthur was 17. Now, however, it seemed that he would be around 21, considering Arthur was 25. His name was Alfred Jones. An odd name, Arthur had to admit, but that just depended on his parents.
"Send him in, then," Arthur said. He was interested to know what he would want.
"Sure," Peter stated and left the room.
It wasn't long before the page entered again, this time with who Arthur supposed was the prince. He had to admit, he looked remarkably like that boy he saw around Francis a lot. Alfred had ragged, sandy blonde hair with an odd cowlick sticking up in the middle of the part near his forehead. He had mesmerizing sapphire eyes that popped out from his tan skin, but they were slightly hidden behind a pair of glasses. All in all, he was quite handsome. He was wearing formal attire, a suit, but he looked awkward in it, like he wasn't used to it and didn't like it. Despite looking young and awkward, he had this determined look on his face.
"Alfred Jones, correct?" Arthur asked as he watched Peter disappear again.
"Yeah," Alfred stated bluntly, which surprised Arthur. Usually, the princes and princess from the other territories treated him with enough respect to at least call him "sir." However, there was something about that voice…The odd accent compared to Arthur's own and how it had a bit of a twang to it that Arthur couldn't explain.
"Well, what business do you have here?" Arthur asked, making his voice sound official like he had been taught.
"I want you to release Larkin," Alfred said simply. Arthur waited a second to see if the man would explain himself, but when he didn't, he was forced to ask another question.
"What do you mean?" he asked.
"I meant what I said," Alfred crossed his arms in front of his chest. "You are a tyrant and the people I represent want to be let go."
"Do explain how I am a tyrant," Arthur said. This had never happened to him before, either. He had considered himself a fair ruler, never a tyrant. That accusation made him a tad bit angry, but he didn't let that show in his voice.
"You make us pay for your wars we aren't even a part of, for one thing," Alfred stated. "You're taking away our natural resources like forests and fields for pointless things you don't need. And you obviously have no care for the people of Larkin, as most of them are currently violently diseased and dying every day and no one from this kingdom even lifts a finger to help. I can continue, but I think I made my point."
Arthur didn't reply for a moment. Those were true, but he never quite thought of it in that perspective. He did have the territories help pay for wars, mostly because the fees sometimes were too large for the main kingdom to pay for it all by themselves. And the destroying of natural resources was to make things like boats and clothing and food for the kingdom. Plus, Arthur had no idea of an illness breakout in Larkin. That was news to him.
However, this...child just came in and disrespected Arthur, his king. Calling him a tyrant and blaming him for things that Arthur had no idea about. And the way he put things, he was treating Arthur like he was an idiot. Arthur would never allow anyone to treat him like that.
"You do realize that the world does not revolve around Larkin?" Arthur asked. "There are things happening in this world that require help from other places that can give it. For instance, when a kingdom goes to war with another, it can be expensive and can't entirely pay for it by itself. It makes perfect sense for a territory not going into war to give payment to the kingdom protecting it from things like war."
It looked like Alfred was about to say something, but Arthur cut him off.
"As for your resources," Arthur continued, leaning forward in his throne, "sometimes, things need to be made to better society, like boats or clothing. And, sometimes, resources to make those things can be in some place other than the kingdom that needs it. When things like that are needed, it can be necessary to get rid of natural resources in order to make life better for everyone."
Alfred tried to talk again, but Arthur cut him off again.
"And as for the illness," Arthur stood up and walked towards the prince, "personally, I did not know it was occurring. Therefore, there was no possible way in this world that I could have helped you or your people. And, usually, figuring out a way to help in situations like that takes time. Understand?"
Alfred opened his mouth again to talk, but Arthur stopped him again. By now, he was right in front of the young man. It did irritate him slightly that Alfred was taller, so he couldn't be as intimidating as he wanted to be.
"Next time, before you call someone a tyrant," Arthur stated, "make sure you do take a gander at their side. Make sure you can get it through your thick skull that this kingdom actually did found the place that you live in. And that I, personally, am making sure that it prospers and stays protected as long as I am the ruler. You cannot accuse me of anything."
"I have no idea what your version of 'prospering' is," Alfred glared down at him. "But I can assure you that what is happening at Larkin is not prospering. We don't even get a chance, because we're constantly paying all of the pointless taxes you've placed on us and you don't let us move beyond certain points so that we can expand with our population. And do not talk down about us like we are some ungrateful kids who can't handle themselves. If you need help paying for a war, fine, but at least ask first because I will have you know that we are humans, not the pieces of paper you get information about us on. We do actually have needs, which we can't fulfill because we can't even afford the taxes."
"I do not think of any of the territories as pieces of paper," Arthur narrowed his eyes at Alfred. "I will have you know that I treat all of them with the same respect that I do my own kingdom."
"I doubt that," Alfred snorted. "You haven't set foot on any of the territories you so gladly own. And I love how you call them 'the territories.' That's all they are, right? A way to say that you have more land than the other tyrants in this world."
"Leave," Arthur ordered.
"I honestly don't think I can follow a king that's shorter than me," Alfred stated irritably. "You look kind of ridiculous trying to look like you have authority."
"I do have authority," Arthur glared at him. "More than you."
"I am just here to represent the people I was placed in charge of," Alfred said. "I do know what they need and the only way to get that is for you to release your grip on them."
"No," Arthur stated. "From what I can tell, you probably wouldn't even be able to handle yourself as an independent kingdom. You wouldn't even last a year before you came crawling back to me."
"Wanna test that theory?" Alfred challenged.
"You are not getting independence," Arthur growled. "And when you go back to your territory," Arthur put emphasis on that word, "you can tell them all that it would be all your fault that they never get their independence."
"You sure you aren't a tyrant?" Alfred asked, and then added, vioce dripping with sarcasm, and even going so far as to bow, "my king?"
"You will leave my sight," Arthur said with a huff, turning around to go back to the throne. "Now!"
Arthur stormed to the throne and sat down, closing his eyes and massaging the bridge of his nose with both of his hands. He didn't open his eyes until he was positive he was alone in the room again.
That damn prince didn't know his place, he decided. He was lucky that Arthur hadn't ordered punishment or even done it himself. It had been a long time since he made a brat know his place. For some reason, that idea pleased him.
Arthur impatiently tapped his fingers on the arm of the throne, trying to think clearly. Then he decided.
If Larkin was rebelling so much, then Arthur was going to set it straight. He stood up and stormed out of the room, ready to make plans to visit his territory.
Okay! So, I'm back with a new story! And it's USUK, for all the people following me for that. I've decided that I'm going to take a break from my Disney Parodies, seeing as I still need to smooth down a lot of ideas. And I came up with this a while ago. Believe it or not, I came up with it while listening to "Colors of the Wind" from Pocahantas. You'll see where that comes into play later.
Anyway! Please tell me what you think of it so far! And, trust me, this is just the tip of the iceberg, it gets a lot better soon.
Oh, and I don't own Hetalia, I swear.