Title: Never Before (Part Two)
Authors: mithrigil and puella_nerdii
Fandom: Axis Powers Hetalia, traditional historical timeline
Characters: America and England
Rating: PG-13, for language.
Timestamp: 1942-1943, this part. Eventually to 1945.
Summary: World War II for them, in letters and telegrams.
Part one is here.
1 January, A.D. 1942
YOU LEFT YOUR BRIEFCASE IN THE CONFERENCE ROOM STOP
I BROUGHT IT BACK TO THE HOTEL STOP
COME PICK IT UP BEFORE MY FLIGHT OUT BECAUSE I AM NOT LEAVING IT AT THE FRONT DESK STOP
UNLESS YOU WANT ME TO BRING IT BACK TO EUROPE AND MAKE YOU COME GET IT HERE STOP
IDIOT FULL STOP
January 6, 1942
Sorry about that; I guess I'm leaving things all over the place lately. My briefcase, my boys at Bataan--they've all reached the peninsula by now, and I think they should be able to fend Japan off long enough to escape before he takes the entire Philippines. I hope, anyway. They've only got enough food for six months, and it'll take me longer than that to fight my way across the Pacific. You'll let MacArthur and the boys crash at Australia's place for a while, won't you?
Especially since it looks like I'm going to be over at your house when I'm not clashing with Japan in the Pacific. Are you still rationing coffee and cigarettes? Damn.
9 January, A.D. 1942
I'll make sure Australia treats you with all the respect you deserve. And no, that's not intended to be sarcastic. I really do thank you for finally stepping up to it, though the circumstances are still unfortunate, and my best to your men in the Pacific.
Yes, we are still rationing coffee and cigarettes, and all manner of things you insist that you cannot be without. Then again, you've never taken well to rationing of any kind. Might I suggest encouraging your people to, well, we call it Digging for Victory here. But I suppose you know best how to keep your people's spirits up.
My god, I'm saying that you know something best. I think the heat is getting to my head.
I do believe Hell is located somewhere in North Africa. Or, where I am is Hell. El Aghelia is the fifth or sixth level, I think.
Odd, that you're the one at sea now.
January 25, 1942
In Samoa now. My boys are hauling ass out of Bataan as fast as they can, but they've been pushed to the Bagac-Orion line and they can't withdraw any farther. I think we've contained Japan at the beachheads; his men are battering our lines, but they haven't broken through yet, so we just have to keep holding them until MacArthur leaves for Australia.
You know, I'm proud of my boys -- and Philippines's guys too, of course. Just a handful of them are holding up the line, and most of them are dyeing their uniforms with coffee grounds and making machine gun mounts from scraps, and there's no way they should be able to hold out, but they're doing it. I do hope I can swoop in and snatch them out of there, though. Besides, I think Australia could use their help.
I know Japan's giving you hell in Singapore, so give him back some from me.
7 February, A.D. 1942
I'll be certain to give Japan some of the levels of Hell that my men are bringing souvenirs back from in Africa. Anything to distract him and make it easier for us both to bring him down. He's done positively devious things in Malaya, not that I expected any different, I just recall that he used to be on my side and it chafes, more than a little.
We're convening, here--Australia and Holland and India and I--and expect to commence operations shortly. If the censors haven't made a flipbook of this letter just for my mentioning that, I suppose it's also safe to tell you
Either way, I'm sure I'll be back in Africa.
15 February, A.D. 1942
IF I DO NOT TELEGRAPH OR PHONE IN 24 HOURS I AM IN CHANGI GAOL STOP
JAPAN ALREADY GOT HOLLAND STOP
FUCKING LITTLE BASTARD STOP
SHOULD HAVE LET RUSSIA KILL HIM WHEN I HAD THE CHANCE STOP
IT IS ANOTHER FUCKING YORKTOWN FULL STOP
16 February, A.D. 1942
CARRY ON FULL STOP
March 12, 1942
You'll get Singapore back. Got to regroup in Australia and stop Japan from overrunning the rest of the Pacific first -- we finally managed to drag MacArthur and some of our boys out of the Philippines, though he kept hollering that he'd return, and he almost missed his PT boat out of there while he was doing it -- but
Right, less depressing news. I know you're going to start cutting back on coal and electricity rations soon, but can you try to keep the heat on at the air bases I've set up over on the Isles? No offense, but your place is really drafty, and since I've got to run the European operations out of there, I'd rather not spend all that time shivering. I know you're stuck in Africa and you'd probably be glad to be cold, but trust me, it sucks and I start to sneeze a lot. And when everyone starts sneezing, bad things happen.
Is it just me or does this war kind of suck so far?
29 March, A.D. 1942
Wear a sweater. Wear a blanket. I remember you wearing blankets when you were young, you'd take them to breakfast and say they were dressing gowns like mine, only "not frilly". It's as viable a method of keeping warm now as it was then.
I'm actually not in Africa at the moment. You'll forgive me for not mentioning it in any plans, but as of early this morning we've leveled Lübeck. I'm not dancing a jig for joy--it's good to give that Kraut and his Kaiser a taste of their own medicine, but I do happen to have some idea how it actually feels, getting something that's been part of you forever burned away. That was for Coventry. I should think I'll pity the sap when we're through with him. He really was too young to break the rest of us.
As for you in the Pacific, I hear you're shuffling your command around. Do remind Australia to respect that. God help me, I think you're actually senior to him.
Postscript: Belatedly, you want me to have Singapore back. You want me to have a colony. You. Grab a chaise, I believe I have the vapours.
April 3, 1942
I DIDN'T SAY YOU COULD KEEP HIM STOP
REMEMBER WE TALKED ABOUT THIS IN THE ATLANTIC CHARTER STOP
LOOK CAN'T TALK NOW STOP
JAPAN'S BOMBING OUR LINES AT BATAAN AND I STILL HAVEN'T GOTTEN ALL MY BOYS OUT OF THERE STOP
YOU'D THINK HE'D TAKE A BREAK FOR EASTER WEEKEND OR SOMETHING BUT NO FULL STOP
9 April, A.D. 1942
ARE YOU ALL RIGHT STOP
I AM HEARING REPORTS THAT I WOULD REALLY PREFER NOT TO BE TRUE STOP
ESPECIALLY IF THEY CONCERN YOU STOP
NO I DON'T MEAN WAIT I MEAN DELETE THAT LAST LINE STOP
I M FULL STOP
FROM NOW ON I DO NOT ALLOW DICTATION STOP
AND I MEAN IN TELEGRAPHY AS WELL AS IN GOVERNMENT STOP
I ASSURE YOU THE ENSIGN WAS TAKING LIBERTIES AND HAS BEEN SUITABLY REPRIMANDED STOP
ARE YOU ALL RIGHT FULL STOP
April 10, 1942
I AM GOING TO FIND JAPAN STOP
AND DRAG HIM OUT OF WHATEVER ISLAND HOLE HE'S DUG HIMSELF INTO STOP
AND PUNCH HIM IN THE JAW SO HARD YOU'D THINK SUPERMAN DID IT STOP
SPEAKING OF HAVE YOU SEEN THE NEW COMICS THEY'RE COMING OUT WITH FOR HIM STOP
THEY'RE PRETTY AWESOME STOP
I'D SEND YOU SOME BUT I DON'T WANT YOU TO GET ALL SNOOTY STOP
HAVE SOMETHING UP MY SLEEVE, YOU'LL SEE WHAT IN ABOUT A WEEK FULL STOP
April 18, 1942
SO YOU SEE WHAT I MEANT STOP
JUST BOMBED JAPAN STOP
IN HIS OWN HOUSE STOP
OH YEAH STOP
THAT'S WHAT YOU GET FOR BUILDING YOUR WALLS OUT OF PAPER YOU DOUCHE STOP
NEVER COUNT AMERICA OUT STOP
YOKOSUKA ON THAT ONE JAPAN FULL STOP
23 April, A.D. 1942
Your puns Yokosuka. If you're going to piggypack on a portmanteau, don't drop the anchor so early.
You know what else can suck it? The fucking Luftwaffe. Make a pun on that, America. I could use the laugh.
29 April, A.D. 1942
BETWEEN BAEDECKER RAIDS AND SRI LANKA STOP
I CAN SAY TO YOU IN LINGUA FRANCA STOP
THAT IF I SURVIVE STOP
AND THAT KRAUT'S STILL ALIVE STOP
I WILL DRAW UP AND QUARTER THE WANKER FULL STOP
05 - 07 - 1942
"--America--what the Hell are you--"
"I'm in a plane--just launched from the Lexington, long story--look, I can't find Japan. I know he's in the Coral Sea, and I thought I saw his main carrier force but there was only one carrier there, so I thought I'd torpedo it anyway, and then Japan dive-bombed my oiler so I really can't spend all day flying around and looking for his main force 'cause I'm running low on fuel and I have like three conflicting sets of coordinates for where everyone's supposed to be, and I have no idea--whoa--"
"America stop talking and start concentrating, you're supposed to be flying a--what?"
"I think he's using his ninja powers to hide or something. You know how to get past those, right?"
"For fuck's sake, America, you'll find him if you look for him instead of radioing me up, you're in battle, act like it."
"I am but there are clouds everywhere and I can't see a damn--oh! Oh! There he is! There he is! Ha-ha, I got him! Take that, sucker!"
"Good. Now take advantage of the clear and find another plane to shoot down."
"Wait. Oh. Oops. Shit. Sorry, Admiral Crace! England, I gotta go, I accidentally bombed one of Crace's ships and I think he's pretty pissed..."
"--you stupid fucker! That's what you get for radioing me in the middle of a fucking battle, you--America? America!"
26 May, A.D. 1942
God help me I just signed another alliance with Russia and am in the process of nationalising coal.
I am about to give myself a papercut to make sure that my blood, at least, is still blue.
June 3, 1942
WON'T BE ABLE TO WRITE FOR THE NEXT FEW DAYS STOP
SOMETHING BIG'S GOING DOWN IN THE PACIFIC STOP
GIVE YOUR CRYPTOLOGISTS A BIG OLD HUG AND KISS FROM ME STOP
WE KNOW JAPAN'S GOING AFTER MIDWAY STOP
PROBABLY SOMETIME TOMORROW STOP
AND WHEN HE DOES WE'LL BE WAITING FOR HIM STOP
WISH ME LUCK FULL STOP
June 8, 1942
I did it.
I'm tired as all hell and there are weird red lines in my eyes and you don't even want to know what my breath smells like.
But I did it. We won. We annihilated four of his aircraft carriers, England, we sunk them and there's no way he's going to attack Hawaii now or drive me back to the coast. He tried to ambush us but we knew he was coming and we sprung a trap of our own and it worked; his own destroyer led us right to his main carrier forces and we torpedoed the hell out of them--
I'm still kind of giddy. Giddy and tired, like I'm running on pure adrenaline, which I probably am. So I should sleep.
But we won, England. Forget Coral Sea, we really won this time. And we're going to take the Pacific back, and we're going to take Europe back, and we're going to win the rest of this war, too.
After I sleep. Man, I need to sleep.
18 June, A.D. 1942
My PM thanks you for your hospitality informs me that "Drs MAUD" will be coming back to me shortly. That's funny, I thought they already had. I'd ask what you were up to if I didn't already know. I hope to god that you do, you know. Know. What you're doing.
I'm writing instead of wiring you since I'm stuck in a hole in Tobruk. It strikes me as a personal kind of purgatory that you're at sea and I'm in the sand, but you're doing remarkably out there now (I admit it, that hard head of yours is good for sinking ships) and I can take the heat. The Kraut'll run out of bullets soon enough, I think. Where's he pulling them from? Fuck.
Forgive me, I'm drunk. And it's beastly out here.
August 9, 1942
So all that talk about the South Seas? You know, where they're supposed to be an island paradise overflowing with coconut milk and honey-skinned babes? Yeah, not so much.
Fletcher and Turner were supposed to drop me and the Marines off on Guadalcanal with enough supplies to let us start constructing airfields, except Japan caught on and attacked the transports, so the Navy had to back off and leave us here to build up the perimeter on our own. And they took most of the equipment and troops we needed with them -- we scrounged some stuff from what Japan left behind, but I've been moving supplies and prepping airstrips all day and my back is screaming at me and we only have about fourteen days' worth of food, so more had better come quick because let me tell you, fourteen days' worth of provisions aren't even going to last that long with me and the boys as hungry as we are. Plus, I think dysentery's sweeping through the camp.
Also, I notice a distinct lack of babes in bikinis and grass skirts offering us refreshing coconut milk as a reward for our intensive -- and trust me, they're intensive -- labors.
Island paradise my ass. Is Operation Torch starting soon? Not soon enough.
19 August, A.D. 1942
Please convey something to your brother in your next reply. Or write to him on your own. He should be awake by then--we found him half-drowned in the Channel after Dieppe, but the wound itself wasn't crippling, just a case of rotten luck. It looks like Operation Torch won't be going off on schedule, not after a showing like that. I feel like drowning Mountbatten, but I can't decide whether his thick skull can be put to better use than hurling at Germany. (I've finally figured it out, Prussia's going after Russia now, tell your men that, it might be useful.)
Take care out there, and keep your head.
August 25, 1942
Haven't really gotten the chance to see Canada, I'm fighting on like three million fronts and helping Eisenhower drill our boys back at your place and listening in on the talks about the you-know-what (also, damn, your scientists drink a lot) and hammering out some of the kinks in the Operation Torch thing (how's Egypt treating you, anyway? FDR and Patton said I should ask) and setting up all these new offices and departments at home...guess war keeps you busy, huh? But I wired him and he said he'd be back in fighting shape soon, so that's good. I'm writing this while my plane refuels; Japan's engaging me off the coast of Guadalcanal and I'm trying to keep him from delivering his troops, because if I have to go through hell to get them then so should he --
-- sorry, I have to cut this letter short, apparently Japan's trying to land in New Guinea now and Australia's throwing a fit and asking where I am. Christ, you'd think Japan would have at least slowed down with his damned offensive by now, I've taken out enough of his carriers, he can't be making new ones that fast...
...well, I guess that's why I stopped sitting around and waiting for him to invade. When someone pushes you, you should try to push back, right? Yeah, yeah, I know, Europe first, but he started it. Catch you later, I hope.
4 September, A.D. 1942
I hate to say it, but you're better at reasoning with my sister than I am. What do I have to do for you to get you to call her off? I really don't need rioting in my streets right now. Fucking IRA. The world's at fucking war and all she can think about is throwing a wrench in fucking everything.
Tonight, I drink to Russia.
September 15, 1942
Oh, I can think of a few things. For now, can you resolve the whole El Alamein thing so Operation Torch can go off on time? (I still think we should've gone with Operation Sledgehammer, by the way. Operation Sledgehammer sounds way more badass, for one.) To be honest, though, Ireland and I usually get drunk and bitch about you, so I don't know how much help I'll be.
Also, christ, does Japan ever stop? He tried to break through the perimeter at Lunga for the past three days or so. We won, but he just kept hurling troops at us, like he hoped some of them would stagger through our lines. I think we're on our way to driving him off the island, though. Hope you can do the same with El Alamein and Germany.
25 October, A.D. 1942
RETAKING EL ALAMEIN STOP
HAVE APPARENTLY GIVEN STUMME A HEART ATTACK STOP
TAKE THAT YOU BAVARIAN FRUIT STOP
AND THAT SAUSAGE SUCKING SWINEFUCKER ROMMEL STOP
LOOK AT AUSTRALIA GO STOP
GUESS HE GOT THE PIRATE GENES FULL STOP
October 26, 1942
THAT'S AWESOME NEWS STOP
THE OPERATION TORCH TASK FORCES SHOULD BE SAILING TOWARDS YOU NOW STOP
PATTON'S LEADING SOME OF THEM AND I THINK YOU'LL LIKE HIM HE'S ABOUT AS CRAZY AS YOU ARE STOP
BUT IN A DIFFERENT WAY STOP
GOTTA GO BLOW UP MORE OF JAPAN'S CARRIERS NOW STOP
THIS IS FOR THE HORNET ASSHOLE STOP
THE ASSHOLE IS JAPAN NOT YOU STOP
USUALLY FULL STOP
27 October, A.D. 1942
I THINK WE'RE TURNING THE SAND BLACK STOP
ALMOST THERE STOP
COME ON MONTGOMERY MOVE YOUR BLOOMING ARSE FULL STOP
11 - 08 - 1942
"Why is France shooting at us? I thought he wasn't supposed to shoot at us!"
"Fuck if I know! I blame the syphilis!"
"...he still has that, huh?"
"America, what's worse than a clap-addled sex maniac under the thumb of the nazis?"
"I dunno, what?"
"A clap-addled sex maniac under the thumb of the nazis who is still sniping at you you idiot, get down!"
"I'm getting down, I'm getting down--ha, okay, I think we've got the beachheads, I'm pretty sure I see France pulling out. Awesome."
"France, pulling out? Now that's something you don't see every day."
"Ha ha ha. Give me a hand with Oran, will you? I don't think I'm going to have any more problems with Casablanca."
"Certainly. I'll come in from the West."
"You know, Iggy, I think this is the beginning of a beautiful friendship."
"I think we ought to call it the end of the beginning."
November 12, 1942
I hope you get this note before you head out to Tobruk. I'm out of here in a few hours, too -- Japan's back at Guadalcanal, and this time he's trying to land at Henderson Field and retake it. I think I can intercept him in time to make him cancel his offensive, but I've got to hurry. Anyway, I think we can tackle Morocco, Algeria, and Tunisia. (Eisenhower's doing pretty good, huh? I know, I know, you wanted your guys to lead the fight, but France hates me less and you have to admit, Eisenhower's knocking this one out of the park.) We'll keep pushing into the interior once we both get back, all right? The bosy can cool their heels for a day or two; they've earned it.
Anyway, I just thought I'd let you know where I was, so you didn't think I was running off or anything.
12 November, A.D. 1942
IF YOU'RE GOING TO WALK OUT IN THE MIDDLE OF THE NIGHT DON'T LEAVE ME WITH YOUR LAUNDRY STOP
OR YOUR GENERAL'S LAUNDRY STOP
HE MAY BE DOING AN ADMIRABLE JOB BUT HIS SOCKS REEK LIKE ANYONE ELSE'S STOP
ALSO I AM NOT YOUR MAID STOP
YOU RELINQUISHED THAT PRIVILEGE TWO CENTURIES AGO STOP
AND I HAVE A CAMPAIGN TO RUN WHILE YOU GO OFF AND HAVE A TURKEY SHOOT STOP
WHEN I GET TOBRUK BACK FOR US YOU'RE NOT GETTING ANY OF THE BOOZE STOP
OR THE CREDIT STOP
COME BACK SOON SO I CAN GLOAT STOP
November 17, 1942
LOST THE JUNEAU BUT GOT THE HIEI AND THE KIRISHIMA WHICH ISN'T SUCH A BAD TRADE STOP
WE'VE STILL GOT THE SEA STOP
IT'S WEIRD TO HEAR ME SAY THAT ISN'T IT STOP
ANYWAY WE'VE PRIED JAPAN'S PAWS OFF GUADALCANAL STOP
NOW WE JUST HAVE TO WAIT FOR HIM TO REALIZE IT STOP
HE'S REALLY STUBBORN IN CASE YOU HADN'T NOTICED STOP
RACING BACK TO TUNISIA STOP
LUFTWAFFE KEEPS HARASSING ME BUT I THINK I CAN SEE DJEBEL ABIOD IN THE DISTA FULL STOP
SO ABOUT THAT STOP
LOOKS LIKE GERMANY'S SET UP A FEW ROADBLOCKS IN OUR RACE STOP
THIS MIGHT TAKE A WHILE FULL STOP
25 November, A.D. 1942
So Greece agreed to the sabotage and Operation Harling went off without a hitch. I know you're going to find the word "Gorgopotamos" absolutely silly, but I assure you it means precisely what you think it means. I wonder if I can construe it as a dragonslaying. Or somesuch. Greece has been a righteous chap all through this.
He's also offered some insight on Japan. (He's had similar treaties to mine with him, though not to that extent. In case you didn't know.) Stubborn, yes; possessive, yes; nothing I couldn't have told you already. But Greece says that Japan clings to self-constructions, that once he's built himself up to be something, he will preserve that image at any cost. I'd never thought of it that way, I just felt that was what Japan was. Is. Fuck, I'm maudlin.
So keep that in mind. If Japan has decided to be an Empire, he'll be an Empire until you make him have to be something else.
Victories or none, I'm getting drunk with France and Greece tonight.
December 3, 1942
I've gotten that impression, yeah. I thought he'd have given up Guadalcanal by now -- I mean, I chased off his supply ships again last week and his men are stranded here without provisions, and I'm picking them off from the ground and the air, but not a word about withdrawing from him. And I've been monitoring his communications pretty closely, I'd know if there was.
You know I've been in this war -- well, been a belligerent power -- for almost a year now? I'm still not sure how I feel about that. We're starting to ration over here, too. Gasoline's hard enough to scrimp on, but now they're talking about rationing coffee. I know why, I know we need the merchant vessels for other things, but I'm going to have a hell of a time staying awake, let me tell you. Unless Japan keeps me up with bombs, which I wouldn't put past him.
Oh, FDR says to convey this your way: the Italian navigator has landed in the new world.
22 December, A.D. 1942
Forgive the scribbling, paper is still rationed and I'll have to use this one anyway. That's good news, America. Commend the Italian navigator for it.
In equally bittersweet news, Russia's driven Prussia and his ilk off. Bittersweet because it's good to hear that General Winter continues to be an effective deterrent to megalomaniacs through the centuries (why don't they ever learn?), but that means they're going to be concentrating on our side of the line again.
It's been a year, America. Don't let me down
01 - 14 - 1943
"Well, well. Here's looking at you, all sunburnt in winter."
"You're looking a little pink yourself, England."
"The healthy flush of activity and alcohol, I assure you."
"And your pale ass getting too much exposure to the desert sun, yeah."
"I've kept my arse covered, thanks so much."
"You're welcome. This is a pretty nice city, you know. Swank."
"I think so too. ... Is he...all right?"
"France? Relatively speaking. He didn't want to come at first, but I think your boss strongarmed him into it."
"As if I'd give a shit about France. I meant...I meant your boss. Only one of us here looking pale, I'll wager."
"He'll be okay. It's been a long ten years for him, that's all."
"Right... Well, here's to twice that to come."
"...So I don't think we'll have to force an unconditional surrender out of Italy of all people."
"He should fold once we invade."
"This really has gone on long enough."
"No kidding. Well, once we get Tunisia, we can mount an invasion of -- we can mount an invasion of Sicily pretty easily from there, right?"
"It's like what Rome did, in reverse."
"Yeah. And then Russia pushes in from the east, we push in from the west, we get a big old Germany sandwich in the middle."
"Not the Wurst position to be in."
"...England, that was awful."
"I'm drunk. Don't expect Spenser."
"Well, you've always been kind of a fairy queen."
"--...America, come here."
"I'm so awash with pride that you remember who wrote what that I have to--never mind. Carry on. I'll be fey some other time."
23 January, A.D. 1943
YOU'VE GOT YOUR SHORES OF TRIPOLI BACK STOP
REMEMBER WHEN FRANCE FIRST PLAYED YOU THAT SONG STOP
FOR ONCE YOU'RE STEALING FROM HIM AND NOT ME STOP
I STILL THINK IT SOUNDED BETTER IN THE OPERA STOP
EVEN IF YOUR MEN SOUND BRILL SINGING IN UNISON STOP
ALSO I THINK I'LL HOLD ON TO THE CITY FOR YOU STOP
SINCE YOU'RE SO BUSY FULL STOP
January 27, 1943
DAMN RIGHT I'M BUSY STOP
GUESS WHO JUST PARTICIPATED IN AN AIR RAID ON WILHELMSHAVEN STOP
AN ALL-AMERICAN BOMBER FLIGHT MIGHT I ADD STOP
BETWEEN THAT AND STALINGRAD GERMANY SHOULD BE GETTING A LOT MORE CONCERNED ABOUT SAVING HIS OWN NECK STOP
AND LESS ABOUT CUTTING OTHER COUNTRIES' THROATS STOP
YOU'RE WELCOME FULL STOP
8 February, A.D. 1943
RAIDING BURMA WITH CHINDITS STOP
YES I KNOW YOU THINK THE NAME SOUNDS FUNNY STOP
JUST KEEP JAPAN DISTRACTED STOP
FUCK IT'S WINDY OUT FULL STOP
February 10, 1943
Trust me, Japan's distracted. He finished evacuating Guadalcanal yesterday, so the island's ours. Took him long enough. It looks like we're going to keep frog-hopping across the Pacific like this, snatching back as many islands from him as we can until we reach his. We just proved we can, after all. I think I'm heading back to Africa, though, now that some of the pressure's off the Pacific -- we have a lot of carriers and warships to fix up and rebuild, and they don't really need me for the regrouping. Besides, Eisenhower says Anderson's pulling dick moves with troop coordination, and I know you're sore about him commanding our armies in Europe, but he's the best guy we've got.
Time to push into Tunisia -- we crossed the Atlas Mountains, now we just need to penetrate the interior.
11 February, A.D. 1943
EISENHOWER MY ARSE STOP
YOU THINK YOU CAN JUST LINDY HOP ON IN HERE AND TAKE COMMAND OF ALL OF THE ALLIED FORCES IN EUROPE STOP
MY GOD STOP
AND YOU CALL ME AN IMPERIOUS BASTARD FULL STOP
February 20, 1943
Seriously, what the hell is up with his tanks? My bullets bounced off them like they were rubber balls or something. And then Germany ran me over. And then he drove into my trench, made a half-turn, and ran me over again.
Stupid mountains. Stupid Fredendall. Stupid tanks. Stupid Tunisia.
...soon? He's trying to cut me off at Thala. And. Well. He's kind of winning at the moment.
21 February, A.D. 1943
America, you idiot.
Just leaving this with the medics for you. We held them off. And now you're going to think twice about doing this alone, got it?
I have to get back to Burma. Or the other side of Tunisia. I don't even fucking remember.
March 6, 1943
FOR WHAT YOU DID BACK THERE STOP
ALEXANDER'S RIGHT WE DO HAVE BETTER MEN THAN FREDENDALL STOP
WE'RE BRINGING IN PATTON TO WHIP II CORPS INTO SHAPE STOP
HE'S PRETTY GOOD AT THAT STOP
ALSO MAYBE WE SHOULD STOP PARCELING OUT UNITS AND START KEEPING THEM TOGETHER SO THEY DON'T SPREAD OUT AS MUCH STOP
THAT MIGHT HELP STOP
I NEED TO HEAD BACK TO THE PACIFIC BUT I SHOULDN'T BE THERE LONG STOP
16 March, A.D. 1943
GET RUSSIA OFF MY BACK ABOUT THIS SECOND FRONT BULLSHIT STOP
THERE IS A SECOND FRONT STOP
HIS IS THE SECOND FRONT STOP
MINE HAS BEEN THE FIRST SINCE 39 STOP
I THINK HE'S SEEING TOO MUCH RED STOP
WITH ALLIES LIKE THESE WHO NEEDS AN AXIS FULL STOP
March 24, 1943
Told Russia that we're sweeping into Sicily as soon as we secure Tunisia, but at least Germany's diverting troops down here and away from his borders so he should really stop complaining. I know there've been troop increases, because they've all been attacking me.
And you too, I guess.
Speaking of, time for an El Guettar solo, since I just whipped some major Kraut behind. Your pansy Panzers don't hold up so well against my mines, do they, Germany? Patton, you are the man.
Once you break the Mareth Line, I can meet up with you at Gabes, and after that, it's just a matter of time. Hopefully not too much time, though.
26 March, A.D. 1943
I'LL SEE YOU AT GABES STOP
ALSO YOU WERE RIGHT STOP
PATTON IS ALMOST AS CRAZY AS I STOP
BUT I'M THE ONE WITH THE LEFT HOOK FULL STOP
April 18, 1943
SO MY SHOOTING'S BEEN REALLY HOT TODAY STOP
FIRST I SHOOT DOWN JAPAN'S NAVAL STRATEGIST'S PLANE WHEN HE FLIES A LITTLE TOO CLOSE TO BOUGAINVILLE STOP
I THINK HIS NAME WAS MATSUMOTO OR YAMAMOTO OR YAKITORI OR SOMETHING STOP
THEN I NAIL GERMANY'S TROOP-TRANSPORT CRAFT BEFORE HE CAN PICK UP ALL THE SOLDIERS WE'VE STRANDED IN TUNISIA STOP
WELL NOT LITERALLY STOP
BUT I'M DAMN GOOD AT SETTING ENEMY PLANES ON FIRE STOP
WHO'S THE MAN FULL STOP
1 May, A.D. 1943
YOU ARE IN FACT THE MAN STOP
NOW FOLLOW THROUGH ON IT AND MEET ME HALFWAY FULL STOP
May 7, 1943
This one's for your brother.
Oh, you take Tunis
And I'll take Bizete
And I'll be in Sicily 'afore ye
And me and old England
Will someday meet again
On the bonny bonny banks of Tunisia.
(One of your colonels was teaching my boys the original lyrics to that one. We had a great time singing it when we were rolling into Bizete this morning.)
...well, not until Germany and Italy surrender in North Africa, but that's going to happen any day now.
I don't know why I feel like singing, I just do.
12 May, A.D. 1943
Postscript: I hope it's not Tunisia we're meeting again in, we've got that Conference to go to, now that we've driven them out of Africa at last. My PM's prepared a new hat.
05 - 19 - 1943
"What do you know, I think Congress likes him."
"I told you so. He's an old dear. I suppose your people can appreciate his wit, stutter or no stutter."
"Yeah. My boss likes having him around, too."
"So different. Them, I mean. Not us, not really."
"We're plenty different! But -- not bad different. Just different, that's all."
"Sometimes I wonder."
"You know, we like difference over here."
"I know. And we've built our culture on it. I--never mind, I don't know what I'm saying. Now or ever. I'm so tired."
"Want me to call you a cab back to the hotel? I think your boss is just going to keep going on like this. You know, stuff about the combined strength of our two great nations, the debts we owe each other, the special relationship..."
"No, no, I like to hear him talk. Especially about that. Just...just catch me if I nod off, all right?"
"Sure thing, old man."
"I'm surprised you haven't called me a whippersnapper yet."
"I think you're getting a little old for that."
"Ha, you finally admit it."
"I'll have to if I want to keep you, won't I. Now hush. You might want to hear what he's going on about."
On to Part 3