WARNING! This involves reincarnation, so if that offends you in any way, please do not read. Also, this is a freakin' long story, over 5,000 words. So, you've been warned.
Northern Brittania, long long ago
A being looked up as a gruff voice grunted at her. The young girl, no more than five years old, looked at her father. He had a spear in hand with blood dripping down the stick onto the cold white fluff below them. It stained it red, like the flower that grows when the cold begins to leave.
She grunted in his direction and he made a motion toward a cluster of huts, and then walked off. She understood him enough to follow to her make-shift home. At the moment, the hunt was near here and other families had realized this as well. At least for now, they were working together to take down bigger animals, providing more food and pelts.
Once near her home, she saw others her age playing in the snow. Deciding she wanted to join, she ran up with the others and they all took off running. She, finding excitement begin to run through her, took off in search of the others. It had become a game later known as hide and seek.
The little (h/c) haired girl sprinted as fast as she could trying to spot the other children. Without much effort, she saw a bit of blonde spiked hair peeking out over a bush. She began running over, carefully treading on the snow, and she tagged him. The little boy was startled and fell backward, looking up at her and blinking his large green eyes. She threw him a smile and he then smiled nervously back. She took his hand and got up, running in another direction. The little boy was lost for a second, but then caught on and they began running together.
Within the time it took for the sun to set, the pair had found all the other children and they were now drawing in the snow. She drew a pretty flower, the boy drew the fire that gave them warmth, but the little girl then drew a crude hand. The blonde boy she had just met drew a hand on top of hers, probably meaning to draw them linked. The two then joined hands and laughed boisterously as their families gave them some meat to hold off their hunger for the night.
Roman Britain, 4th century
_____’s mother, her sisters, and she were cooking in the hut-like shelter they had made. The country they lived in was currently in control of the romans and they were travelling merchants, going from city to city to show off their wares. They were making a stew for later in the day as the family’s father figure and his sons had gone off to the town to sell. The aroma wasn’t pleasing, but any food was better than starving.
As _____ stirred the pot while her mother added ingredients, little Daralis came over with something shiny in her hand. She tentatively asked, “Mother, what this?”
The elder brunette turned her head to the young one and a look of frustration came upon her face. She spoke up, “Alcott needs this. _____, you are the eldest and I cannot leave Palma, she is too green. I need you to find your father and brothers and take this to them, it is one of our better wares. Go, be swift.”
The 15 year old nodded, her (e/c) orbs sparkling at the thought of being able to go into the city and see what is there. She took the small gem on the chain and put on her good boots as well as a cloak, it was colder outside. She then called as she walked out of the shelter, “I will return soon!”
The adolescent took off, quickly finding the city and going to the bustling market place.
All around her, things were happening. Business transactions, children running amuck, even soldiers making their rounds. Everything was so fresh and new, she wished to stay here forever. It seemed impossible to be bored here and her heart thrived. Blood rushed through her veins as she closed her eyes and took it all in. Then, a loud voice called, “_____! Come hither.”
She turned to see her older brother calling her to their stand and she picked up her skirts to rush over. Her father finished a transaction and turned to her, before asking, “Why have you come to our stand? Is something amiss?”
_____ bowed her head slightly, a sign of respect to her father, before answering, “Mother said you left this and that it was very valuable.” She held up the chain with the glittering emerald on the end of it. Her father grasped it from her hands and smiled, before he commanded, “_____, please return to your mother quickly. Thank you.”
She nodded, before walking off towards the city gates. As she walked on though, a cart rolled by, bringing up dust from the ground and causing her vision to get blurry leading to her stepping into a patch of mud. She fell roughly to the ground, her backside taking the blow. She was about to get up when a hand waved in front of her face. A voice called, “Allow me to help you up missy.”
She took the hand, feeling its deep callouses meaning he was of lower class. Hopping up, she looked up at the nice man to see someone a bit older than her. “Thank you very much sir.”
He smiled widely at her and she gazed at him for a moment. A golden head framed his angular face which had some dirt on it, but the most beautiful things were his eyes, as bright and green as the gem she was holding earlier. She asked politely, “Might I get your name, kind sir?”
He looked up and responded, “Arthur Kirkland, and you?”
She added, “_____ ______, do you live here?”
He nodded and she smiled, her family would be staying here for the next three days. He said, “Well, I should be going, I have to help my family and all.”
“Wait Arthur! Could I find you tomorrow?” she asked him. She had hardly had time to talk to anyone save for her family with how much they were travelling. He seemed nice and she could do with some friendship.
He responded simply, “Of course, I’ll be sure to find you Miss _____.”
The young girl’s eyes sparkled as she took up her skirts and ran back to her mother, hoping that she wouldn’t worry too much. She called, “I will see you soon Arthur!”
She then took off at a faster pace to her mother whom was sitting right outside of the hut and looking over the horizon for her. The daughter smiled and asked, “May I go to the town tomorrow as well mother? It is so interesting.”
The older woman ushered her inside before going back to the stew. _____ stood patiently by her, before her mother responded, “Once you have helped some, I suppose. But do not stay too long!”
London, England, 1563
Lady _____ was currently having tea time in the Queen’s house herself, seated next to her fiancé Lord Hunsdon and a man that had been introduced to her as Britain himself. She was scanning the room around her while sipping some of her tea and listening to the conversation that seemed to be going on around her. It was about arts at the moment, a subject she was well-versed in, but she was ever the polite lady. She would wait until someone asked her for her to put her two cents in.
As she gazed about, she noticed her gaze continuously returning to the man next to her.
Something about his features was incredibly familiar to her, but she figured that is how it must feel for all the English. He represented them all, so shouldn’t he be familiar? Yet still, something tugged at her.
“Lady _____, are there any grand plays you have seen?” a posh voiced asked and she smiled at Lord Strafford. Her mind took a moment to focus on the subject at hand and she thought back to some of the plays she had seen recently.
She politely answered, “Gorboduc was actually quite captivating sir, and have you seen some of the art coming in from Italy recently? It is stunning if you ask me, I can only marvel at these masterpieces.”
This sparked a new conversation and her fiancé, who was much older than her, looked at her lovingly. She smiled as best she could back, but sighed internally knowing that the topic would give her more time to think.
Carefully, the younger noble glanced at Britain and much to her displeasure, he noticed. He shot her a shy smile and she returned it as best she could, but she could feel her cheeks tinge pink. She was rather embarrassed, but he was also incredibly handsome.
Quickly, she turned her head away once the small interaction had happened. Something in her stomach began fluttering and she could not help, but to notice it. Trying to quiet it, she took another sip of tea though her thoughts now entirely focused on one man.
Even so, the tea time went on with more small talk and _____ could not take her mind off of Mister Britain. Suddenly, Lord Hunsdon took her arm and she linked her own smaller one in his. He spoke up, “Thank you all for the lovely tea time, I hope to have the pleasure of seeing you all soon.”
Each of the men began taking their ladies, but someone tapped on her shoulder and the young noble turned to see the golden haired man she had not been able to take her eyes off of. He grabbed her hand daintily and brought it to his lips, placing a light kiss upon the back. The woman’s face lit up pink and he smiled charmingly, before speaking up, “It was a pleasure to meet you Lady _____. I hope that we can see more of each other.”
She nodded lightly, biting her lip slightly before her betrothed began walking off and he said, “Farewell good friends!”
He then led her out of the palace and opened the carriage door for her, _____ picking up the end of her dress and making her way in, before gracefully seating herself. Lord Hunsdon looked at her and smiled, “Not two weeks until our marriage, love.”
She smiled and nodded, though the smile was forced. Marriage for her was not about love, it was a business contract. Her father was now on good terms with another lord, and this lord was now assured some way to get an heir. Yet, the man she was interested in was unobtainable so it was just as well, it was the life she had been brought up for anyway, she was not afraid.
-Two weeks later, the night before the wedding-
“Miss! Miss! The Queen, god bless her, and Mister Britain are coming over for supper tonight, they will arrive in two hours! Lord Hunsdon has ordered me to help you prepare,” a servant came into her room calling. The young woman looked up from the book she had been reading and smiled at Mary. She put her book down carefully, marking the page with a ribbon and getting up. Her handmaid was getting the proper clothing from her wardrobe.
She came over and the two went through the process of getting ready, one that was particularly long and painstaking for _____. It involved losing her breath as the corset went on, shuffling around to get the farthingale on, and finally drowning in the weight of the partlet, forepart, kirtle, petticoat, sleeves, stomacher, and not to mention the gown itself. Daily, they went through this so _____ was adjusted to it, but that did not mean she liked it.
Once putting on her shoes and having her hair pinned up in some complex hairdo, she was ready to meet her fiancé and host the guests.
The pair who were hosting soon split and _____ went to greet the guests while Harold was in the dining room getting them settled.
Noble, by noble, they all came on; all the while she had to keep a friendly smile on her face. Once the Queen came in, she curtsied deep and a servant took her to the dining room, but Britain himself soon followed her. He greeted, “Good evening Lady _____.” He took her hand and kissed it, before continuing, “Always a pleasure.”
Her cheeks were painted pink and she merely smiled, staying at her post before Mary came to get her on a command. She followed into the dining hall and all of the men stood up as she entered. Her head came in a slight bow, smiling as wide as she could as she took her place next to her husband once more placed by Britain, the Queen on the opposite side of her.
Finally, the butlers came in to serve the first course and Lord Hunsdon spoke up, “Welcome one and all to our humble abode. We are having this celebration in honor of the marriage between Lady _____ _____ and I tomorrow, please enjoy the meal and thank you all for coming.”
Everyone clapped and Harold made the bold move to kiss her on the cheek. She smiled and laughed lightly before conversations began throughout the table. Britain politely asked, “Are you excited to be wed tomorrow Lady _____?”
She smiled and answered as she was expected, not as she wished, “Of course, it is a rather exciting event, sir. I can only hope that you will make it.”
The charming smile that made her flush appeared on his face and he responded, “If my lady wishes it. I wish you a long and prosperous marriage with many children.”
She nodded, her heart falling a bit, realizing a country could not possibly have an interest in her. He was immortal and she was here only to look pretty and bear children.
Still, she kept the smile up as expected.
The rest of the dinner went on uneventfully, but it finally came time for the dancing portion. _____ got up and her Lord took her hand, guiding her to the floor as the dance began. She began doing one of the few things she enjoyed, dancing.
Song after song came on and she lost herself in the music, switching from partner to partner as was polite. But finally a deeply calloused hand took hers, a hand that did not speak of noble blood. She looked up to find a forest green gaze meeting hers. “A dance,
All she could do was nod as the delicate flowing movements began. She found herself completely at ease, gazing at his gorgeous eyes as they took up the steps. He was a natural, or so it seemed, and they twirled around the entire room in a sort of bliss. Not a word was uttered, the looks the pair held told it all. Love.
After what felt like much too short of a time, the song ended and Lord Hunsdon came back over to his betrothed. She smiled as the true Brit spoke, “Thank you for the dance, my lady. I wish you the best.”
And so, _____ found a love that was never meant to be.
Just outside Charlestown, Massachusetts, British Colony of America
Friday, June 16th, 1775
Throughout the day, many injured soldiers had been coming into the medic tent and it was impossible for the nurses to keep up. They had to begin classifying the chances of the soldier living and they could only assist if he had a solid chance. _____ was disturbed by this, so many soldiers were dying who might have lived, but war was war and she had no other decision.
As the head British nurse, she had seen every end of the injury spectrum. She was one of the very few who had some medical experience; her father was a doctor, so she took the worst cases.
She was tending to a soldier with a gunshot wound in his thigh when someone began screaming, “Clear a table! Britain has been wounded, someone clear a table for him!”
_____ immediately took control, doing what she thought was best. She ordered, “Elizabeth, take the bullet out of the man I was just working on! Andrea, get the man with the dislocated shoulder off the table and help him stay standing. Alexandria, get me the anesthetic, this man is important!”
Quickly, the nurses began doing what they were told and two soldiers came in bearing the Brit on a makeshift gurney. She pointed to the clear table and they put him on it, before standing there for a moment. She barked, “Go on! The war still needs you!”
She hurried over to Britain and looked at him seeing a nasty bayonet wound in his stomach and he was bleeding profusely. Other than his main issue, his left wrist may be broken and he had many small cuts visible. Not having another moment to think, _____ took off his jacket and shirt, before putting a cloth on his abdomen and applying pressure. ‘He is handsome,’ she thought, but refocused on the task at hand and called, “I need a nurse to hold this!”
She was grabbing the anesthetic, something used only for those very high up as they were supplied with so little. She had the shot in her hands when a muffled groan was heard, “No… save it.”
She turned to see bright emerald eyes half open, the bright color contrasting with the dull pain that was visible. She looked at the shot of numbing medicine and spoke gently to him, “Sir, this is what I am supposed to do. We save the anesthetic for the commanders and generals.”
“Well that’s… bloody rubbish! All of these… soldiers deserve it, so… save it,” he mumbled. She took the anesthetic and noticed his eyes squinted as he said this. She still took the shot and was going to inject him with it when a hand pushed it away. “No.”
The 21 year old nurse looked pointedly at the man, deciding to save it so he wouldn’t knock it out of her hand and waste any. She finally said, “Fine, have it your way! We are going to have to put hydrogen peroxide on it, which is going to sting something awful. Here, bite on this.”
She gave him a stick and put it in his mouth, before grabbing a small cup of hydrogen peroxide. She whispered, more to herself as this was her least favorite part, “Brace yourself.”
The country nodded and she poured the peroxide on a napkin before dabbing his wound with it. Suddenly, a hand shot out and grabbed her own, holding it in a death grip. She had to do this for about two minutes as the wound was very deep.
Finally, she had finished the task and released his hand so she could begin stitching the wound up. The patient had spit the stick out of his mouth and was now lying with his head to the side; his body was stiff, fists clenched. She quickly finished and wiped her brow with a spare cloth, before moving to his wrist and taking it gently in her hands. She moved it around a bit and he groaned. She then put it down and went to get a bandage, two pieces of wood, and two strips of cloth.
With supplies in hand, she came back and he began speaking to her, “Thank you very much miss…?”
She started wrapping his wrist and replied, “Miss _____, and it is my job, Mister Britain.”
He smiled lightly and continued speaking, “Please call me Arthur, love. None the less, it is nurses like you who help us through the war. The battle I got these from, we had just taken over the hill when I was injured. We had fought off the Americans, but it was a pyrrhic victory if you ask me. We have more casualties and dead than I would care to count.”
The head nurse merely nodded, listening intently to the man as she finished the bandage and tied it up. She was about to put the wood on to make sure his wrist doesn’t move much, but he spoke up, “Please don’t, I will heal sooner than it would be worth. I am a country after all.”
_____ nodded and said, “Mister Bri-“ “Arthur please,” “Arthur, please try and get some rest. You will need it to heal, even if you are a country, a wound like the one you have takes energy to close. “
He looked at the nurse above him, a small smile playing upon his features, before he closed his eyes. Knowing that she had done her job well, _____ smiled and began humming a small tune from when she was a child. She walked off and began taking care of the other soldiers.
Five hours later, the sun was setting and _____ was exhausted, but soldiers still needed care. All of the major wounds had been taken of; it was down to gashes and broken bones. Yet, there were too many wounds to be cared for in one day.
A nurse looked at her after she had bandaged a man’s wrist when he had a gash on his leg, she spoke, “Miss _____, you need some rest.”
She nodded reluctantly, but realized what she was doing was helping no one. She walked over to the nurse’s tent, realizing she had given her bed to a newly amputated soldier. She took to the medical tent to search for an extra bed when she saw the table in the middle of the room empty. Immediately, her mind went crazy, the most important patient had gotten up. Britain was nowhere to be found. The coat and shirt that were stripped from him earlier were gone as well.
_____ got up and began looking frantically around the camp, when she saw the hint of a red coat on the edge of the camp. She ran off to see him trekking through the forest. “Sir, stop! Bri-Arthur!”
The man turned and she saw the bandage from his wrist gone. The blood stain was still there, but it was all dried. He spoke up, “_____, I cannot stay in one place. The war goes on, we may have won one battle, but I represent an entire country. I cannot stay here; I need to go where soldiers are needed. It is what I have to do.”
Suddenly, a flood of emotions hit her. She ran up to him, hugging him tightly, feeling a tear leak down her face. Logically, she had no idea what she was doing, she was an immigrant from Germany in the first place, she had moved to England when she was 14. She was not a true British citizen, yet something made her heart sink to know he couldn’t stay. All she could do was mutter, “Please… they do need you. You need rest.”
He looked at her desperately, his green spheres glimmering with a pain that was unknown to her. ‘If only she knew,’ he thought. He grabbed her soldiers and said, “You have your fate, I have mine, we have to follow the path set for us right now. Do not worry though; we are sure to cross paths again. Wait for me _____.”
Without thinking, she kissed him on the lips as more tears began streaming down her (s/c) complexion. He kissed back, hugging her tightly into him, never wanting to let go. They were both caught up in the passion of this single kiss.
He finally let go of her and pulled away. She muttered, “I will wait, if it takes forever.”
He smiled weakly, his eyes shining brightly with unshed tears. He then turned and walked off, salty droplets hitting the forest floor as he walked on.
“_____, I need to tell you some things,” the Brit she had come to know as Arthur spoke up. Currently, the two were sitting on the floor of _____’s flat, trying to relax and take their mind away from the politics of the world. Britain was on the brink of war once more and it was not looking pretty, they had hardly gotten over the Great War which was over 20 years ago.
She turned her head to him, (h/c) locks splayed over the floor. She then sat up and looked intently at her boyfriend of one year, “Yes Arthur?”
He took a strand of her beautiful shining hair, playing with it a bit, before looking deeply into her eyes. He then grabbed both of her hands and whispered, “Whatever I tell you, please, don’t think of me any different.”
She laughed lightly, squeezing his hands. “I would never, darling.”
He sighed loudly, before mustering up all of his courage and saying, “I am going to sound crazy, but I need you to believe me more than ever right now. I am… I am the human personification of the country of Great Britain. I represent everything about this country and have since its beginning. I am in charge of it all; everything I am is connected to the lovely country of Great Britain.” The astounded look on her face told him he would need to explain further, “All of those times I have to leave unexpectedly are because of meetings or an emergency call, the country needs me when it needs me. Every time I go to work, I go to an office and talk to other countries as well as world leaders. I have to figure out the economy, politics, trade, everything. It all rests on my shoulders and tomorrow, I am giving Germany the ultimatum to get his troops out of Poland or let war begin. I am almost sure what his answer will be, but I need to try love.” He looked at her, noting the look on her face. “Love? …Dear? _____?”
All the female could do was gaze at him as the gears in her brain attempted to work this out. She finally murmured, “Arthur, April Fool’s Day was several months ago. Joke is over.” The look on his face stayed though and she began getting worried, “No seriously Arthur, this isn’t funny. I don’t know who gave you this idea, but knock it off!”
Still, Arthur gazed at her, heartbroken. “Arthur… Arthur please. Please?” She paused before tears began building up, “Arthur… I-I how do you expect me to respond to this? I don’t know what to do, I love you more than anything, but how is a human supposed to live with this? You talk to countries about the state of the world; I talk to my friends about marriage and annoying coworkers. Your future… it goes on forever, mine is only for the next 50 years or so. How is a mortal supposed to live with an immortal? How do you want me to live like that? Watch as you stay the same beautiful you and I look in the mirror to see gray hair and wrinkles? I lose my mind as old age grabs me and you have to watch and suffer. I can’t live knowing that I can never be your main priority, that you have so much else to focus on. Arthur… I can’t live with you, I cannot do this. We need to break up.”
The tears she had been holding in finally broke out and poured down her face. She began crying into his shirt and he could only hold her while she cried, his own heart finally breaking. After all these years, meeting again, falling deeper in love, time after time, a small hope had formed. Finally, the time had come for the truth to be spilled and his hope was diminished. Thinking that it would ever work was a stupid fantasy.
They stayed like that for at least an hour when she finally got up, “Arthur, I am so sorry, but I cannot live like this. I can’t stay in love with a country, you have so much you have to worry about and I’ll just be a burden. I can’t do it… Arthur, I need you to get out of my life.” It was as though she shot a bullet through her own heart, but she continued, grimacing all the while, “I don’t want to see you again. I can’t bear to see you.”
He looked at her, both of them broken beyond repair. Why had fate dealt him this hand? Why couldn’t he be just an average guy? He whispered in her ear, “Give me just one night then.”
She gazed at him, every memory of their past year replaying and she figured this was just as hard on him if not worse. She finally nodded, “Fine, but then, I never want to see you again. I’m not sure if I could go on.”
He then kissed her ear lightly, sucking on the shell. He picked her up bridal style, carrying her to his room and plush bed. On the way, he locked lips with her and they shared an intense kiss that no one could match. Arthur was putting his pent up frustration of so many years past into this night, if this was the last he would have, he would make her remember it.
Thursday, February 14th, 2013
_____ looked at the gorgeous British city in front of her, gazing over the River Thames. This place was no doubt beautiful and she felt as though she had a deep connection to it. Something about this city… she had finally decided to travel here for her 23rd birthday. She was hoping for an adventure.
She took out her map and began walking when she accidentally ran into someone, pushing him into a puddle. “Oh sir, I am so sorry! I didn’t mean to.”
She saw the man fall to the ground and couldn’t help, but stare. He was beautiful, leanly muscular, not too tall, golden blonde hair spiking in all directions, but his eyes. Oh his eyes, she could get used to those, they were the most beautiful shade of green she had ever seen. Only the most beautiful emeralds could compare.
The man blinked as an array of emotions ran through him and the young female adult offered him a hand. He took it and she asked, “Oh, I am really sorry! Please, let me get you coffee to make up for that, oh your jacket is all dirty now too. Please, coffee is on me, Mr….?”
Arthur stood there, staring at the beautiful woman. This was the first time he had seen her in more than half a century and he felt an onslaught of emotions; frustration, desire, anger, sadness, but the main one was a deep and true love for her. But still, he knew where this would end, he knew the inevitable closing. The only variables were how soon and where it would happen. Should he even bother with this girl who had caused him so much heartache?
“Arthur Kirkland, and please, coffee is on me. I would love to take a lovely lady like you out on Valentine’s Day, shall we?” The Brit put out his arm for her to link onto. The lovely woman that had stolen his heart took his arm and laughed, smiling the smile that entranced him from the start.
No matter how much heartbreak he had to go through, no matter how many times he had to tear himself from her, no matter how much it hurt and how it was worse than any torture a country could ever inflict, she was worth it. She was worth it every time.