“I don’t know.” America sits, hunched forward, his chin cupped in his hands. “Maybe I should back off. Maybe I am being sensitive. Maybe I shouldn’t protest over such ‘little’ things. Maybe they’re right, and I need to calm down and let some of these small things go…. focus on bigger fights?”

Germany stands then, to face America. “No. You know that is not true. I can tell you from experience that that is not true. If you stop fighting for the small things… Alfred, I watched a government strip people of thier rights starting with the smallest things, things people thought too small to fight back against, until atrocities were commonplace. I was cocky. I thought that such things could never happen, not in my country, and I was wrong. Whatever anyone can say about your passions, you need to know that there is no right too small to defend.”

Germany extends a hand. “After all, we promised, America, after that war.”

America smiles slightly, he takes Germany’s outstretched hand, and he pulls himself up. “Never again.”