Characters: Alfred, Yao
Warnings: None for this chapter, but light violence in the later parts
Summary: Alfred reflects on his relationship with Yao as the two nations continue to form economic and political ties.
I do not own Hetalia. All characters are the property of Hidekaz Himuraya
He had always been there. This was a simple revelation, but Alfred was still surprised when he realized that Yao Wang, or China, had always been there. This was true of most nations; Francis, Arthur, Ivan, even Kiku all had histories that made his two-hundred years of nationhood seem like a week in comparison. Yao, on the other hand, Yao was over four-thousand years old. He had survived millennia and seen the shifting of civilizations. He could remember farther back than many of the other nations could even hope or dare to. Thus, when Alfred first opened his eyes on that bright new continent Yao had already existed for centuries. It was a weighty thing for Alfred to realize as he fixed his tie and prepared to leave for a meeting with the ancient nation. The young American tightened the Windsor knot and grabbed his thermos of coffee, a granola bar, his briefcase and his laptop. He was running late. Outside his apartment a dark sedan and two men in sunglasses and suits stood at the ready.
“Good morning, Sir!” One of the suits greeted.
“Good morning!” Alfred responded with a smile.
He slipped into the back seat and the guards shut the door. They drove off. The driver already knew where to go. Yao had always been there, and even more pressing, Yao had been one of the first nations Alfred had contacted. The young nation broke into his granola bar, and his mind wandered. Outside the sight of the ocean in winter brought to mind the first time they had met.
*************** Canton 1784**********
The waves lapped at the sand as Alfred walked on the beach. In the moonlight, his moored merchant ship seemed to be floating in sapphires. It seemed so far off as he stood on the sand waiting. Then they appeared. Alfred sighted a small entourage of five men all dressed in long robes. They each moved as if in procession and each carried such an air of solemnity that Alfred dared not call out to them. They stopped in front of Alfred and stood stock still as if waiting for him to speak.
“I am Alfred F. Jones, the representative of The United States of America,” he began.
He swallowed. He was still so young. Diplomatic envoys, trade agreements, economic alliances these were things he barely knew. Arthur had never shown him any of the basic protocols of nationhood. No doubt he never expected his young colony to rebel and seek sovereignty. Alfred clenched his fist.
‘Even now Arthur’s trying to prevent me from becoming a fully fledged nation, closing me off from Europe and his Atlantic Ports’ Alfred griped.
‘No! I’m doing this. I am the United States, and we will be a fully realized nation,’ He affirmed.
“We have come here to open diplomatic relations and to ask for formal trade with China,” Alfred announced.
The crowd went silent and then one of the men spoke. A lyrical string of sounds fell, and then the group glanced around and began whispering.
“How strange that you should conduct diplomatic relations in a language only nations would understand. I had to translate for you,” A man remarked.
The speaker regarded Alfred with an amused expression. He was dressed in a red and gold robe with long flowing black hair and glittering brown eyes. His features were delicate yet regal and authoritative.
“I am Wang Yao, the representative of the Middle Kingdom of China,” the man introduced himself.
He bowed and Alfred mirrored the action.
“Please, I hope that our nations can work together to reach an agreement that benefits us all,” Alfred began.
“You are too eager and rash. Why are you so anxious to trade with us?” Yao asked.
“Because I. Because I want to become strong!” Alfred answered.
Yao fixed the younger nation with an amused gaze again, then he laughed. He turned to the other men who had stopped whispering and then nodded.
“You really are too eager. It reminds me of someone else I know. Come. It is best to discuss these matters in the morning. Your men may meet with our officials in town tomorrow,” Yao announced.
“Then you will hear us out?” Alfred asked.
Yao nodded. With that he and his entourage began walking back up the beach toward the town.
“I will send a messenger to tell you where,” he called out.
Alfred only barely heard as he rushed back to the ship to tell his men the good news.
Months later the ship returned to America loaded with teas, silks, porcelains and various Chinese goods. Alfred had taken another step toward proving himself as a nation.
“One of my first partners,” Alfred mused.
He took another sip of his coffee as the car slowed to a stop. The doors opened, and he stepped out in front a large official looking building. His boss was arriving in a limo farther down the driveway. Alfred waved and grabbed his briefcase and laptop from the car. Then he hurried into the building. That was the first of many times he would see Yao, and looking back, each meeting seemed like knots in a thread of fate. Something Alfred was only now beginning to appreciate.
To Be Continued
This chapter details the start of Old China Trade. After the Revolution, the British Empire basically closed off their colonies and European ports to American merchant vessels. This led the Americans to search for other trading opportunities including trade with China. Thus China became one of America’s first trading partners.
Wow. I didn’t mean to go so long. Anyways, I wanted to do a story chronicling the relationship between China and America. It’s an interesting relationship and as far as I know, not much has been written about it. I figured I’d try. Unfortunately that means multiple chapters, which I haven’t tried in a while. I expect most of them to be shorter than this one since I’m going for a vignette style. Anyways thanks for reading and please review.
Chap 2: http://community.livejournal.com/hetalia/10249147.html