Germany's Family Prologue 3: WWII's Occupation of France
By Switzy Fangirl
France remained stubbornly silent as he listened to the spy. "Hitler is planning to have Paris burned?" He asked, trying to process that this was happening. That Germany, the young nation he had helped raise, was about to have his capital burned to the ground.
The spy, a young Frenchman, nodded. "Oui, oui1."
"This is not good." France leaned against the wall, pulling a pack of French cigarettes out of his pocket and a lighter. He offered the spy one, watching the man refuse politely before shrugging and lighting one. He exhaled the calming smoke. "We must prepare. Please, alert Charles de Gaulle for me, I have something I must do."
The spy nodded and left the room silently.
France sighed, wondering how this would work out. He knew he couldn't hide from Germany forever, that the nation was searching for him, and being so actively involved in the resistance was just asking for trouble. He squashed the doubt growing in his heart angrily. "I am La France de Vichy2, Vichy France. I am not some young nation without any experience in war and the art of hiding. Just because I am occupied does not mean I will lose. Angleterre3 will get Amérique4 to help to and France will be freed. I just need to have faith."
"Keep an eye out for this Frenchman." Germany held up a portrait of France, watching the small squad of German guards nod. "He is the representative of France. He is to be brought directly to me if found. Any questions?"
The guards remained still, none raising their hands.
"Gut5." Germany smiled. "Dismissed."
The guards saluted and left.
Prussia leaned against the wall, smiling at his younger brother. "You really miss him, don't you? And I thought I was crazy for missing the little bitch, you may have gone off the damn deep end."
Germany rolled his eyes. "Be thankful big bruder, I could have him tortured for information instead of giving him to you. He is part of the resistance, we both know him well enough to know that. He will not be found easily. The shortages and the occupation may have weakened him, but he is no stranger to this game. Before you accuse me of going off the deep end, do not forget it was you who fell in love with the hure6."
German spun on his heels and left his brother to seethe.
"I remember you fell in love with him to, he was your Mutter7, and you used to beg me to have him over. I wasn't the only one enamored with a hure. Think about that before you throw my affection in my face." Prussia growled at the empty room, wondering where he had gone wrong. He chuckled. "I may be awesome at a lot of things, but France was the good parent, not me. Verdammt8! I wish the damn Frenchie was here, he always knew what to do with Deutschland9."
France listened to Charles de Gaulle order around a few members of the rebellion before leaving the room, completely uninterested in the affairs being discussed. He walked out, looking around for a bar. He could use a pick me up at this point. In the morning he'd probably be kicking himself for spending money on alcohol with the current prices up as high as they were because of the shortages. Another thing to blame on Germany and Prussia.
He walked into the small cabaret10, looking around. The place was virtually empty, only a few Parisians and one or two German soldiers. He went over to the bar tender and took a seat on a stool. "Ambroise11, can I get something sweet and strong?" France asked.
The Frenchman, boy actually, nodded. "Anything specific Mr. Bonnefoy?" Ambroise asked, cleaning a glass.
"Non, just need something." France smiled. "How's your Mère12?"
The boy began pouring out a bottle of wine. "She's still upset since we got news yesterday that my Père13 and my Frères14 fell in a raid on the Germans. She's afraid I'll enlist." He set the glass down in front of France.
"Will you?" France asked, taking a sip.
"Non." Ambroise shook his head. "My Mère needs me here, running the bar. Plus, I'm not a fighter." He picked up a glass and began cleaning it. "By the by, I heard from one of the soldiers that the Germans be looking for you." He whispered.
"What did you have to do to get this information?" France raised an eyebrow. "Not up to your old tricks, are you?"
Ambroise chuckled. "Non, nothing so fun. I'm on the straight and narrow now. I got the bastard drunk. He wouldn't shut up about the plans and stuff. I can't remember most of it, you know me, can't remember much. I do remember that. Apparently Luddy boy wants you back. Misses his mommy that much."
France chuckled, taking another drink. "I guess. Anything else?"
"Marie is pregnant with a boche babe15." Ambroise whispered the hot bit of gossip. "Her parents disowned her, she's working here as a bar maid part time."
"Tell her I wish her luck." France finished his drink. "What about the father?"
Ambroise refilled France's glass. "The father is promising to take her back with him to Germany when the war ends, no matter who wins." He smiled. "I believe him. He's such a young one, not much older than me. If he survives and she does, even if she loses the baby, he'll take her. Marie's lucky to find one like him."
"You'll find your own prince charming one day Ambroise." France promised. "You have forever, remember?"
"Yeah, I guess." Espoir rolled his eyes. "I always have wondered about vampires…maybe I'll take a trip to Romania one day."
"Dumb sorcière16." France chugged the rest of his drink and paid for his drinks. "I'll be back soon."
Two weeks later France came back to the bar, walking in and heading to the counter.
A few guards were barking in German at Ambroise. One of them grabbed the boy, lifting him up off the ground. They finally gave up on German and barked at him in heavily accented French.
"Where is the representative of France?" The German growled, shaking Ambroise.
"Fuck you!" Ambroise cried out, kicking his legs out. "I am proud Frenchman! Even if I did know where he was I wouldn't tell you! Just because he comes here for a drink once in while doesn't mean I know where he resides!"
"We have ways of getting information out of you." Another German growled. "Tell us what we want to know!"
"Francis never told me where he lives!" Ambroise insisted.
"Brat!" The sound of the slap shocked everyone with their drinks. Everyone looked up at the soldier who had laid a hand on Ambroise.
"That is it! Bastards! You should know better than to mess with a sorcière!" Ambroise glared.
"Wait!" France called. "Ambroise, you do not need to protect me. I am capable of doing that myself."
Ambroise face palmed. "Francis, will you please stop being an idiot for one moment. I can take care of this."
"And end up tortured for the rest of eternity? I'm the idiot." France rolled his eyes before setting his gaze on the soldier holding Ambroise up. "Release him. If Germany or Prussia or whoever sent you wants me they can leave Ambroise alone. He has nothing to do with it. And if they want me they can come get me themselves, not attack a bar tender."
Ambroise was released. He dusted himself off before clearing his throat. "Back to your drinks!"
No one obeyed, watching France.
The door to the bar opened and Germany walked in, quickly followed by Prussia.
"France!" Prussia's eyes brightened. "Awesome!" France rolled his eyes, glancing at Ambroise.
Ambroise nodded, turning and walking back behind the counter. "Kick some ass Francis, you owe me big for the tip I dropped. I got more if you win."
France glanced from Germany to Prussia, currently squashed between the two in the motor car. The trip to Germany had been rather uneventful, and the car ride had been rather silent. He wondered how much longer the war would last and when he would be freed again.
Prussia draped an arm over France's shoulder. France didn't shrug him off. Germany looked at them before nodding at the driver to speed up. The car sped up a bit, Germany's house slowly coming into sight.
Prussia grabbed France's handcuffs as the motor car pulled to a stop and dragged the Frenchman out. No one spoke as they approached the house.
Germany stopped outside and watched Prussia and France continue inside. A small, slightly deranged, smile crossed his face. "Meine Familie17. I have Meine Familie back."
France continued to walk around the kitchen, ignoring Prussia. Germany had gone back to Paris for a while, apparently having some business with General Choltitz17.
"France." Prussia set a hand of France's shoulder.
France stopped moving, standing stalk still.
"Do you hate me?"
France bit his lip. "Non, Prusse19, I do not."
"Do you still have feelings for me? Like when we were kids?"
"Depends. Do you?"
"Ja20, I do. I miss you Frankreich21. I really do."
"Oui, I have found myself missing you sometimes." France admitted.
Prussia leaned down and kissed the Frenchman. France kissed back.
Ambroise filled himself a glass of wine and sat at the counter, glancing around his bar with narrowed eyes. The small bar was filled with German soldiers. Not a single Frenchman or woman to be found. After the incident with Francis about 6 months ago no Parisian would dare step inside. He was only in business now because he was one of few bars to serve German beer. He personally found it far too bitter and strong, but whatever paid the bills. Marie had moved in with him and his mother, to serve as a nurse for his mother, who was very ill. He blamed the Germans for this, as the army had brought diseases with them. Filthy bastards. His nose scrunched up in disgust and he downed his drink, pouring himself another one.
The door opened and a blond German with bright blue eyes walked in. There was a deranged look about him, as well as an air of authority. All the soldiers stood and saluted him. He gestured for them to sit and took a seat at the counter.
Ambroise glanced at him. "Monsieur22? What would you like?"
"German beer. Whatever you have is fine."
Ambroise nodded, pouring the German a beer, while watching him out of the corner of his eye.
"You're a Hex23, aren't you?" The German asked.
Ambroise ran threw his limited German. "I'm afraid I don't know what that means." He set the glass of beer down in front of the German. "Although your soldier friends have taken to calling me that, among other things. I'm curious if you wouldn't mind telling me what it means?"
"Witch." The German answered in English.
"Oui, that I am." Ambroise nodded. "Unfortunately, I am not good for much with spells. I'm best with simple parlor tricks."
The German took a large swallow of the beer. "Do you remember me?" He asked.
Ambroise looked him over. "Ludwig Beilshdmit, the representative of Germany. You picked up Francis a few months back, I remember you just fine."
"How do you know my name?" Germany demanded.
"I know a lot." Ambroise smirked, picking up his glass of wine, and swallowing what was left. "I keep my head down and my ears open. Also, many of your soldiers cannot keep their mouth shut when they're full of alcohol. I used to deliver information to Francis, but now I have no use for what I learn. I don't really support the resistance, to many deaths. No one to share what I know with." He filled up his glass, turning back to Germany. "Is there anything you particularly want to know?"
"What is your name?" Germany asked.
"Ambroise. It means immortal." Ambroise took a drink of his wine. "Francis told me a lot about you. About how he helped raise you." His eyes narrowed. "What you've done to him seems a little ungrateful. Not that I'm judging of course, I am in no position to judge anyone."
"You speak your mind without fear. Why?" Germany's eyes narrowed at the insight into his life, quickly changing the subject.
"You couldn't silence me if you tried." Ambroise's face took on a serious expression, a far cry from the smirk of before.
The smirk came back. "I'm immortal." He left Germany sitting there to attend to his other customers.
Germany began coming to Ambroise's bar often, sometimes talking to the young Frenchman, sometimes not. He walked into the bar, looking back at the counter. Ambroise was pouring himself a glass of wine. The bar was deserted otherwise. Germany took his normal seat at the counter and Ambroise fetched him a beer without a word. That was very unlike him.
Ambroise set the beer down in front of Germany. He tried to walk off, but Germany grabbed his wrist.
"Something is wrong. I am not stupid. Why are you hiding your face?"
"Let me go." Ambroise clenched his teeth together. "It is none of your business what I do or don't do with my face."
Germany reached up and forced Ambroise to face him. "I didn't know you were vain, though I always thought you were. You didn't want anyone to see that you had a black eye."
Ambroise jerked away. "Doesn't matter anyway." He turned away, beginning to clean a few glasses.
"Who punched you?" Germany finally asked.
"Doesn't matter." Ambroise said after a moment. "Some drunk got in a bar fight. I had to break it up. Nothing much."
Ambroise turned his head a bit to glare at Germany. "Why the hell do you care?"
"I just do. Now tell me."
Ambroise sighed. "I got in a fight, alright."
"Yeah, not like me to do that. I'm not a fighter. Sometimes I lose it though and go off. Very rarely though." He got back to cleaning the glass. "The black eye was a warning. Next time, I may not be up to bar tending." He chuckled. "Oh well, a vacation does sound nice."
"Who punched you?" Germany asked, yet again, still not satisfied.
"Can you drop it, please?"
"It's none of your business!"
Germany watched Ambroise begin to tremble. "It's none of your business." Ambroise repeated.
"I want a name."
"Fine. Jaeger Austerlitz. He's one of the soldiers who comes in regularly. Happy?"
"Ja, Gute Nacht24." Germany paid for his beer and left, planning to find Jaeger Austerlitz and do something. He wasn't sure.
"See you some other time, nosy." Ambroise forced a smile, watching Germany leave before closing the bar down for the night.
Ambroise was seething the second the soldiers, including Jaeger Austerlitz walked in. Austerlitz was sporting multiple bruises and his comrades were laughing at him.
"You should have known better then to attack his pet bar tender. He knows everything." One of the soldiers clapped him on the back. "Hey! Bar tender, a round of German beer for us, please!"
"Coming." Ambroise filled up a few glasses and took them to the soldiers.
Germany walked in and Ambroise didn't even look at him, just continued serving the soldiers. He took his sweet time getting back to the counter.
"Beer?" He asked, keeping his tone bland.
"Ja, and information. You know a lot about my soldiers, what do you know about the rebellion?"
"They're in contact with the British. All I've got. They don't come in here now that you do."
Germany nodded. He'd already known as much.
"Oh, and the Allies are going to attack Northern Africa. You probably knew that though." Ambroise set the beer down in front of Germany, who was shocked silent.
Ambroise didn't open for a week. The news of the full occupation of France had sent him into a kind of depression. He finally decided to open and found a package in front of the door to the bar. A box of Belgium chocolate. He picked it up, glancing at the attached note.
"I'm sorry you're depressed. Enjoy Ambroise." There really wasn't a point in letting good chocolate go to waste anyway, so he opened the box and took at a chocolate. He moaned at the taste. He always had loved candy, especially chocolate, and Belgium chocolate was the best. Well, tied with Swiss chocolate, but still. He allowed himself one more before opening the door and hiding the box under the counter. He opened for business.
"Germany-san! Germany-san!" Italy called, dragging Japan over to wear Germany was.
"Ja, Italy. Hallo25 Japan." Germany looked at them.
"Where are you going?" Italy asked.
"The bar. One of the few that serve German beer. They also have wine, if you want to come."
Italy nodded enthusiastically.
Japan followed behind them, silent.
Ambroise watched as Germany entered with an enthusiastic Italian and a quiet Japanese man. They each to a seat at the counter.
Ambroise set a beer in front of Germany. "And for your friends?" He asked, smiling.
"Wine please!" The Italian smiled.
"Me as well." The Japanese man said quietly.
Ambroise gave them a dazzling smile and poured to glasses of wine, setting one in front of each of them.
"How's business?" Germany asked after a moment.
"Slow. No one knows I'm open again. I think everyone thought I died." Ambroise chuckled. "How's it like on your end?"
"France is fully taken over, but you already know that."
Ambroise nodded. "Oui, I've heard as much. I probably found out before you did. Bar tenders are the best spies, as they say. Anything you want to know? Not that I've heard much but gossip, but I may have something."
Germany's eyes narrowed. "I've been coming here for months, and I'd like to think I know you pretty well Ambroise. You know something. And you will not be satisfied until you tell me, out with it."
"I heard from a friend of Francis's. A British guy with big eyebrows. Something about America has finally decided to join the fight. Oh and the Spanish have decided to remain neutral, but the Russians are very angry with you. They may join the Allies."
"That is good news for you, ja?" Germany asked, clenching his fist around the glass.
"It means I get Francis back and less food shortages. I will miss chatting with you though." Ambroise went to go take more orders.
"Germany! Do you like him?" Italy asked.
Germany glared at him. "Beside the point, Italy. He have training in an hour, don't drink too much." He set down the money for his drink and stood, walking out.
Ambroise pretended he hadn't heard the conversation or seen Germany leave.
France sat down at the desk, Prussia staring over his shoulder. He slowly began writing, a quick letter to Ambroise, nothing big.
The door opened and Germany walked in. Prussia smiled. "Hey little bro, you're back!"
"Anything interesting happen in Paris?"
Germany shook his head. "Nothing, what about here?"
"Frenchie convinced me to let him write a letter to his bar tender friend back in Paris."
"I don't want to know what he had to do to get you to agree, bruder, don't try and tell me."
Prussia pouted. "Fine, but only because I'm awesome like that."
Ambroise glanced around the bar, loneliness clouding his eyes. He figured Germany had gone home, but the German hadn't even said goodbye. The door to the bar slammed open and Marie ran in, baby in her arms, sobbing.
He dropped the half-filled glass of wine in his hand. "Is she?"
Marie ran over and hugged him, letting him sob into her shoulder. "I'm sorry Ambroise, I really am. You couldn't have done anything-"
"Maman26 is really gone."
Germany got back to Paris in May. He knew they were losing the war. He walked up to Ambroise's bar, seeing the girl, Marie, serving alcohol. Ambroise was nowhere to be seen. He walked in. Marie looked at him.
"He left town after his Maman died." She answered, tears welling up in her eyes. "There was nothing to keep him here."
Oui is French for Yes
La France de Vichy means Vichy France, referring to the Vichy government of France.
Angleterre is French for England
Amérique if French for America
Gut is German for Good
Hure is German for Whore
Mutter is German for Mother
Verdamnit is German for Damn it, Blast it, etcetera
Deutschland is German for Germany
Cabaret is French for nightclub or tavern, used a tavern in this story
Ambroise is a bartending immortal witch who happens to be friends with France. His brothers and father died during the war, so he has to take care of his ill mother. He's a large gossip so he gets along well with France.
Mère is French for Mother
Père is French for Father
Frères is French for Brothers
Boche Babe is the child of a German soldier and a French woman
Sorcière is French for Witch
General Choltitz was the German General in charge of Paris
Meine Familie is German for My Family
Prusse is French for Prussia
Ja is German for Yes
Frankreich is German for France
Monsieur is French for Mister
Hex is German for Witch
Gute Nacht is German for Good Night
Hallo is German for Hello
Maman is French for Mommy, Mother, or Mama