oldglory's Journal

Out of Many, One

America / Alfred F. Jones
4 July
Character Name: The United States of America (alias Alfred F. Jones)
Series: Axis Powers Hetalia
Version: original universe, taken from eehhhhhhhh roughly present day
Gender: male
Age: 230-ish (appears 19)

Appearance: Alfred stands 5' 9½" (177cm) tall, that being the average height of Americans. He's Caucasian with short blond hair and blue eyes, and wears half-rimmed glasses. His build is lean, but fit, and although he does worry about his weight occasionally, he's in overall good, athletic shape.

He's not overtly fashion-conscious, so his clothes generally range in sophistication from business-casual to casual-casual. Sometimes he wears a shirt and tie, sometimes a T-shirt, and usually blue jeans. His signature piece, though, is a leather bomber jacket with black fur collar, and a large number "50" on the back. He loves the heck out of this jacket and wears it often.

Personality: As a personification of the United States of America, Alfred is very stereotypically American. He is boisterous, full of energy, headstrong and impulsive, and really, really likes hamburgers. When he gets it in his head to do something, it's extremely hard to stop him, which can cause problems especially when he doesn't know what he's doing.

He has a blatant hero complex, and is convinced that it's up to him to save the world, even though "the whole world" is technically outside his jurisdiction. It's very difficult for him to draw the line between what is and isn't his business. Where there is tyranny, where there is injustice, where there is pollution, he feels it's his responsibility to help. However, his nosiness about it has lost him more friends than it's gained him - but that doesn't seem to bother him, because most of the time he's oblivious to their opinions (if not their existence).

His almost lifelong record of prosperity and military success has made him a real hotshot. Frankly, America believes he's invincible, and it's very, very difficult to convince him otherwise. He loves to have all the latest and greatest weapons and gadgets, taking particular pride in his airplanes, and of course the only thing more fun than having something is showing it off. He doesn't think of himself as materialistic, but in a lot of ways he is.

His hobbies include movie-making, games, and sports - Super Bowl Sunday is practically a holiday at his place. Oddly, he can't handle horror movies at all, no matter how hilariously bad they are, and has only a slightly better track record with scary video games (but sticks with them anyway because it's the brave thing to do). In this and a lot of ways, he's very much like a little kid trapped in the body of a grown-up.

Hetalia canon doesn't give us much on how the countries interact with ordinary people, but the fact that they have official human aliases sort of hints they mostly blend in. Besides, it'd get kind of awkward having to explain to a normal person that you're actually two-hundred-plus years old and a country. Perhaps because of this, despite being in a way the sum of his citizens, he still feels a certain disconnect from them, and his only really close friends at a given time are other countries.

Strengths: For the most part, Alfred's abilities are no different than an ordinary human's. He has, however, had superhuman physical strength his whole life. He takes this for granted and doesn't appear to find it at all unusual.

Since he's fought in (and won) a lot of wars, his combat skills are on par with a highly experienced soldier. He knows how to use a wide variety of guns (extremely well), and is pretty good at hand-to-hand, but he's fairly clumsy with less modern weapons such as swords. He's also an ace pilot of most modern and old-style planes, especially fighters.

For practical purposes, his actions correlate with America-the-country's only in a figurative sense, so it's not like he can randomly call up the Army or summon nukes or anything. That is, the country isn't tied to him so much as he is tied to the country. United States territory is alternately referred to as his "house" or his "body", so either way he knows his way around there (for whatever good that does him here).

He has a wild and vivid imagination - so much so that he can't always tell fantasy from reality, so he's famous for his incredibly hare-brained ideas. He's a total believer in things like ghosts and aliens, but with other fantastical creatures, fairies and stuff, he won't hear a word of it.

Weaknesses: America is not used to losing or getting hurt, nor in any way gracious about doing so. He hates being deliberately attacked on his own turf, and is known to exact swift and terrible revenge on anyone who tries, regardless of the consequences.

Additionally, he's still very young and inexperienced for a country of his size and influence, and his gung-ho attitude does him good only insofar as it doesn't backfire spectacularly - which it's known to do every now and then. He's a dangerous enemy, to be sure, but sometimes he's dangerous even as an ally. But, for better or for worse, he's bound by the Geneva Conventions.

Mindscape: America is a large and diverse nation, so his mindscape is also diverse in appearance. The scenery varies almost at random, and can be anything from dense forest to open plains, from tall mountains to warm beaches. But all the environments share in common a bright, positive atmosphere, and a population of friendly animals.

But there's almost no human presence in this space, giving it a certain sense of isolation or solitude (but not usually in a bad way). The only exception is a medium-sized tent somewhere, with a pickup truck parked next to it. It's bigger on the inside than on the outside, and boasts all the comforts of civilization you could ask for... as well as some unnecessary junk, but what can you do.

Most of the time this environment is warm and sunny, but as America's mood worsens, the weather gets nastier and more dangerous. Also, the more afraid he gets, the smaller and emptier the inside of the tent becomes. In extreme cases it may actually be smaller inside than outside, but this is of course rare.

History: Precisely how the history of America-the-person fits into that of America-the-country is not something Hetalia canon has gone into in great detail, but for all intents and purposes they are one and the same (i.e. gaps in Hetalia can be safely filled in by your textbook).

America began his existence in the mid-1700s, as a set of thirteen British colonies. (There's a running gag that he was corrupted at an early age by England's terrible cooking and has had no taste in food ever since.) Although his big brother England helped him out a lot in his early years, his possessive attitude toward the colonies soon became unbearable, and on July 4, 1776, America declared independence. England didn't let go easily, but America fought back hard and eventually drove him out.

After winning his freedom, he soon began expanding westward, beginning with the Louisiana Purchase in 1803 (which France sold to him mainly to cause trouble for England). Tensions continued to run high between America and England, though, as England was still bitter about the Revolution and wouldn't recognize America as a real country. Finally, America got fed up with his continuing interference, declared war on him in 1812, and won. After that, he put his foot down and declared to all of Europe that he would no longer let any of them colonize or interfere with his continent. (And it was all his, as far as he was concerned; he felt it was his destiny to annex his way clear to the Pacific Ocean.)

But dark times were ahead. During this time of expansion, America's northern and southern states couldn't agree on how to govern the new territories, or whether slavery should be allowed, and in 1861 the South (his brother Dixie) seceded altogether, declaring itself a sovereign country. America the Union wouldn't allow it, and the Civil War that ensued between the two brothers lasted for the next four years. It was a relatively short, but tragic and bloody war, with heavy casualties on both sides. Ultimately, though, America's strength prevailed, and the Confederacy was forced to surrender and move back in with the Union. (From an official standpoint, nobody has heard from him ever since, but he didn't totally cease to exist.)

Having already reached his goal of the Pacific Ocean by 1848, America's focus after the war turned to industrialization. This was when he built a Transcontinental Railroad to connect all the new land together, among other things, and over the next 50 years his infrastructure grew by leaps and bounds. At the same time, his spirit of expansionism remained dauntless as ever. A brief war with Spain in 1898 got him control of Cuba, the Philippines, and several other Spanish colonies, growing his territory out into the Atlantic and Pacific Oceans.

When World War I broke out in Europe in 1914, America stayed out of it at first, figuring that a war on the other side of the Atlantic was mostly none of his business. However, three years later, England forwarded him an intercepted telegram that Germany had sent to Mexico in order to set up an alliance against him. Already none too pleased with Germany over their sinking of the civilian RMS Lusitania, America declared war on Germany, and fought on the side of England and the Allied Powers until it ended a year later.

Since the war didn't actually take place on American soil, his infrastructure was still intact when it ended, and he continued to expand his industrial base, enjoying a period of unparalleled economic prosperity thereafter. However, not thinking things through, he created an incredible surplus of manufactured goods that far exceeded the demand for them. For that and various other reasons, his stock market crashed in 1929 and sent the entire capitalist world spiraling into a Great Depression. America did his best to fix things, but it wasn't until World War II that he truly got back on his feet.

Initially, he hadn't planned to get involved in that war, either, but Japan's attack on Pearl Harbor in 1941 made it personal. America joined the Allies and gave it everything he had to take out the Axis Powers. He took charge with gusto, claiming he would be the hero of the war, which turned out more or less true as it went on. He played an instrumental role in the European theater, and was almost singlehandedly responsible, in particular, for the defeat of Japan, although to this day there's debate over whether it was really necessary to nuke him at point blank.

However, it wasn't long after WWII that he entered into another conflict, this time with Soviet Russia. Both were ideologically opposed to just about everything the other stood for, and very soon into the Cold War, both had stockpiled enough nuclear weapons to blow the world to kingdom come several times over. The standoff lasted almost forty years. America did keep his hand heavily in world affairs, though, occasionally getting involved in other wars against smaller Communist regimes who were less likely to nuke him dead if he invaded. (To this day, the Vietnam War stands out as the only one he's ever decisively lost.)

Finally, in 1991, the USSR collapsed. However, since he'd pretty much proven that no other country could stand up to him in a fight, something strange happened: someone started attacking him indirectly instead.

Truth be told, America was kind of stumped by the attacks. They went on despite that he wasn't at war with anybody, so he couldn't pin them on a particular country. Evidence pointed to a new, sinister enemy, some guy named Terror who didn't seem to be directly allied with any country at all. However, the attack on New York City in 2001 was what really woke him up to the threat. In a classically American move, he immediately declared war on Terror (despite the inherent difficulties in declaring war on an abstract concept), and has been trying to find the bastard ever since. He's convinced that Terror is hiding out somewhere in the Middle East, and has so far invaded and shaken down the houses of Afghanistan and Iraq looking for him. Fortunately, he's stopped short of invading the entire region.