Rating: PG for now, R later
Character(s)/Pairing(s): America, Belarus, Canada, England, France
Warnings: France shows up, possibly naughty language.
Summary: Belarus awakens after landing her plane on the western bank of the Elbe River and finds herself in America's tent. France and Canada show up to meet her while England makes arrangements for her to leave before America gets into trouble.
Belarus sat up and blinked at the light coming in through the tent flap. She shrugged out of her flight jacket and tossed it to the foot of the cot. Stretching with her arms in the air, she looked around at the very tidy space. Boots were polished, everything was in its place. Except for the wrinkles she left in the blankets, the bed had been perfectly made.
Before she could wonder who's tent she was in, she heard voices outside coming closer. One of the voices she recognized right away - England. Suddenly, a hand reached for the tent flap and held it against the pole, as if to block someone.
" Mon Dieu, Angleterre get out of my way and let me see 'er!" A new voice blurted out. He sounded more teasing than irritated.
"No! The last thing she needs is you sniffing around her while she sleeps!"
There was laughter, "Not everyone complains when I do that, like you."
"Bloody hell, I never, Hey -" There was scuffling in front of the tent. Belarus's eyes narrowed at the tent flap when it was flung open.
France strode inside, removing his hat. "Ah, see? She is awake!"
"Because you woke her up, git." England grumbled as he stumbled in after him.
"My apologies, Belarus if I am the reason you are awake," France said has he clicked his heels together and bowed in perfect imitation of her older brother.
"I was already awake," She answered.
"Wonderful, I 'eard about what happened and I wanted to see for myself ... Where is your 'air?!" France stared at her in horror.
England, groaned. "Obviously she cut it off. She's a pilot."
"I saw that ... crop duster she is piloting too!" France retorted angrily, "What is wrong with your brother, 'e has more modern planes than that."
"The men fly those. We were told the women could fly the planes we were assigned or stay on the ground."
"Criminal, criminal." France shook his head, "And your 'air. You 'ad such beautiful long locks when I last saw you."
"It will grow back." Belarus replied.
"Of course it will. Belarus is not the only lady who has cut her hair for the war effort." England said flatly.
"What are you guys doing in here?" America said as he entered the tent, "Oh, you're awake, Belarus," he added, a boyish smile on his face. "They didn't wake you, did they?
Belarus shook her head. "I was already awake."
France gave her a big smile, "Why are you so close to Berlin with that rattletrap?"
"Fighting the war, just like you." Belarus gave him a perplexed look. Wasn't it obvious why she was there?
"I think what France means is, what is your mission?" England asked.
The girl hesitated, not sure how much she should share with them.
"It's alright to tell us," America said as he smiled.
She wasn't so sure about that, but after setting her gaze on each of them, she realized they were all waiting for her to explain why she was there. "The German Ninth Army is trying to move west and unite with the 12th. My mission is to provide air support for my brother, who will stop them."
"They're moving west? Do they want to go to Berlin?" America asked, frowning.
"No, they can't go to Berlin, we surrounded the city and they are cut off."
England leaned forward, giving Belarus a sharp look, "Then that means Germany intends to move west toward the western allies."
"And we will make sure he doesn't," she said matter of fact.
The others exchanged glances with each other. Suddenly, a soft, disembodied voice broke the brief silence, "Germany wants to surrender to us, not Russia."
"GAH!" England shouted, jumping into the air.
"Canada!" America tried not to look spooked, "When the hell did you get here?"
"Eh? I've been here the whole damn time, you idiot!" Canada huffed.
France did his best not to look too started, " 'e is right, once these two armies can get together, they will push across the river."
"No!" Belarus exclaimed, rising from her seat on the cot, "My brother says they must not be allowed to do that!"
"Hey, relax," America said, putting his hand on her shoulder to reassure her, "We're all on the same side here, right?"
England looked uncomfortable, France glanced in the direction of where he heard Canada's voice.
Belarus's eyes gave all of them a withering look before focusing on America again, "I need to get back to my big brother as soon as possible."
"Uh, yeah, see, we don't have plane fuel here." America replied.
"But we are working on getting some," England added.
"And in the meantime, you can be our esteemed guest." France gave her a friendly smile.
Belarus looked down at her feet when she felt a presence and found a polar bear sniffing at her boots. Spending more time than necessary here was not a good thing for her. England asked too many questions, France complained about her hair and America was always fussing over her. She wasn't used to being fussed over.
America clapped his hands together and grinned, "So, are ya hungry? You didn't eat much of a breakfast." He moved over to the trunk at the end of the cot and opened the lid, "I have some C rations in here, you're welcome to them."
"Of course you would stash food in your kit," England grumbled
"Calling that food is an insult to food," France looked at the small box America handed to Belarus.
"There is nothing wrong with C rations," America said, glancing at Belarus when she pulled the pack of cigarettes out of the box. "Germany loves eating them. Better than his iron rations!"
The voice heard earlier spoke up again, "Speaking of Germany, come on America, I know you've got some of that beef stew stashed in here!" He reached under the cot and pulled out a crate.
"When did you get back?" America exclaimed, looking stunned when Canada appeared.
Canada gave him a flat look, "I never left!" He tore open the crate and pulled out a can of stew and handed it to Belarus with a smile, "Here, eat this. It tastes much better."
She took the can from him, "Thank you."
France leapt forward and reached into the crate, "You are 'olding out on us!"
"How much bloody food do you have in here? I want a tin of that!" England snarled, he also grabbed some stew from the crate.
"If you guys want food go to the mess hall!" America bellowed as he snatched the crate away, but not soon enough to keep Canada from grabbing a can. He gave France a look of pure evil as the man shoved a can into each pocket of his uniform coat.
"Why should we? You practically have a mess hall in here," England quipped as he handed the can opener over to Belarus after opening his stew.
Belarus opened the can and took the fork offered her. The first bite made her eyes widen, because the stew inside really was good. She shoveled the rest of the can into her face as fast as the others. Someone passed her a canteen which she drank from heartily because the salt in the stew made her very thirsty. "You are right, Canada, that stew is delicious."
"America always has the good stuff," Canada grinned at her as he held his can away from the polar bear, "Knock it off, Kimajojo!"
"This must be officer's mess, though. The German soldiers never eat this good." England tipped the can up to get the last bit out.
"Not even German officers are eating very well." America replied as he watched Belarus finish her can.
Belarus looked at all of them, thinking about what the Soviet army survived on. She hadn't seen so much meat in weeks, and here they ate it every day. She remembered the last meal she ate before flying - cabbage soup and a piece of rye bread. When they were done flying for the night they had kasha waiting for them for breakfast. "In Poland we found some of the German iron rations. I thought they would have better food."
"They modernized everything except how they feed their troops." England burped and patted his stomach.
France gave England a sidelong look, "If Germany is not modern with food, you are still Medieval, Angleterre."
Canada snorted, then coughed at the stew going the wrong way down his throat. England scowled at both of them and muttered under his breath as he stomped out of the tent. France reached over and pounded Canada on the back until he gasped for him to quit.
Natalia turned to America who gave her a friendly grin, deciding he would be the most helpful. "Is there somewhere I can wash?"
"Huh? Oh yeah sure, uhm, there might be guys in there right now. Lemme go check." Natalia followed him out of the tent, blinking at the brightness of the day. It was warm outside, more like summer than spring. Shielding her eyes, she looked around the camp, already noticing some stares, but in the distance England talked to a man in a jeep.
Just then America came bounding back. "The guys said they would give you 15 minutes. Is that enough?"
Natalia nodded, then followed America around until he found some soap, a washcloth, a clean t shirt and a towel for her. Once she was on her way to the showers, America returned to his tent to find England had returned and was chatting with France.
"There is some fuel for her plane coming. She could probably head back to her side of the river tonight." England said, immediately noticing the frown on his face, "What, she can't stay here."
France only shrugged, giving America an understanding look. He had noticed how he looked at the girl. "I am more concerned about this plan of 'er brother's, 'erding up the Germans like cattle."
America sat down on his cot, "What did you expect Russia to do, wait for Germany to say he's sorry and no hard feelings, you can all go home now?" He looked at his hands and saw they were balled into fists, "I don't like sending her back. Doesn't it bother you women are flying those death traps?"
"Plenty of women have died in this war. I admit using women in combat is ... uhm ... unconventional, but Russia has always been different." England said, "And I don't think you appreciate the situation of having her here and the problems it will cause."
"Of course I do," America muttered, "But can't we just put her on a jeep and drive to a town? Find a boat and take her across? And what kind of problems is she going to cause?"
That earned him a 'don't be dense' look from England. "That plane can't be abandoned as is with two bombs attached to it."
"Bombs?" France gave England a sharp look.
"Aye, the plane is still loaded with two small bombs. Bombardier was killed before they could be delivered."
The tent flap opened and Belarus walked in. Her hair was damp and the spare undershirt America had given her to wear clung to her in spots where her skin was still damp. America didn't realize he was staring until England reached over and slapped the back of his head. "Hey!" He exclaimed, slapping England's hand away.
"The fuel for your plane will be here presently. I think we will have rain in the next day or perhaps the day after. Did you know when you planned to leave?" England asked Belarus, glaring at America while France smirked at them.
"I could leave tonight," she answered, "But I don't know where the rest of my squad is."
"There, you see? No point sending her off when she doesn't even know where to go." America retorted, giving England a smug look.
"Actually, I'm expecting a message from her brother any minute."
America's jaw set firmly, France gave her a smile, England studied her for a moment before leaving the tent. France got up and followed him, almost tripping over Kumajiro on his way out.
America suddenly felt shy once he was alone with Belarus." So, did you have a nice shower?"
"Yes, thank you. I feel better now." The olive drab army undershirt she wore was the smallest America could find, but it was still too big for her.
Americans hate silence, and small talk was how they filled that silence. Belarus had never experienced talking just to talk, so she found this habit odd. She sat on the edge of his cot again, also becoming aware she was alone with a man in a tent during the middle of the day.
"The war will be over soon, what do you think you will do afterward?" America asked, thinking if it were possible, he would like to see her again. He imagined her in a blouse and skirt dressed like other girls. Hair perm with soft curls. She would look really fine.
"I will eventually go back to the farm. First there will be much work to do, cleaning up and rebuilding. Many of my people are gone now."
"You'll be very busy." America could feel her sadness. He wondered how many people had died when Germany had occupied her country.
"Very busy." She nodded, reaching for a leather satchel she had arrived with.
"Okay," America thought for a moment, "Girls in your country go out on dates, right?"
Belarus gave him a curious look. "Of course we do."
"Of course you do! How else would you get to know a guy you might like."
"Usually I start by talking to them."
The girl pulled out a comb and began to pull it through her short hair. America watched her do this before realizing he was staring at her again. He couldn't help it, she was really pretty and watching her comb her hair ... now he understood why England said she couldn't stay.
He leapt to his feet and stomped to the door of the tent, "When you're done with that, come to the mess hall, okay?"
Before she could answer he was gone. She stared at the tent flap, confused as to why he suddenly left when he had mentioned dates and getting to know her better. She would like to get to know him better too. She thought him very kind.
Supper at the mess hall was much like breakfast. Plenty of stares when Belarus walked in, but this time the hall didn't grow silent. The portions of food put on the metal tray were more than Belarus could eat, so she had fun feeding bits to the polar bear, who's name she still couldn't quite remember because it seemed as though Canada called him something different every time.
England and France chatted with her, but America sat quietly, staring at his tray of food. He had lost his appetite. The idea of Belarus flying that plane back and running more bombing missions made him feel white hot anger again. While the others watched Belarus offer another piece of food to Kumajiro, a soldier came into the mess hall and handed England a message.
"I believe this is for you," England said after blinking at the Cyrillic writing and handing it over to Belarus, who opened it with one hand while the polar bear licked her fingers.
"It is from my brother!" She read over the letter quickly:
My dearest comrade sister,
I am thrilled to know you are safe and unhurt. We are very close to
achieving complete victory over Germany! Isn't that wonderful?
you must return to us as quickly as possible. England promised
he would help you do that. Now, this is where you can get
best borscht in Germany. Would you be a dear and get some
for me? Head northeast until you ...
Belarus finished the note and stuffed it into her pocket. She needed a map now and that was with her gear in America's tent. She took her tray over to where they were washed and headed out. The others all looked at each other, but America jumped up and scrambled out the door after her.
Natalia found her map and had it laid out on America's cot. By the time America walked in, he could see her finger pointing at a spot on the map as she read the letter. Big brother was very close.
"What are you doing," America asked when he stepped up to the cot, looking at the map. It was in Russian, but he could still make out some of the city names.
"I am locating where I am supposed to meet my brother," she replied while looking at the map, "He also asked me to use the bombs I still have, but it will be hard for me to do that without a navigator."
"You can't do it yourself?"
Belarus shook her head, "It's not easy to do that and pilot the plane. You see, I idle the engine so it doesn't make noise, and ... "
"I'm going with you," America blurted just as England and France walked into the tent.
Author's Note: Part two of Belarus's adventure with the western allies at the end of World War II. This is the part that would have never happened obviously, but it's part of the plot okay? Just stick with me. Part III will come soon.