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Rough relations


Padraig Rua
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Duke Frederick of Pilsen found a place among the Prussian officers, where the emperor was to pass, and achieved the honour of attracting his notice and received a bow of his narrow head. The ceremony ended, the aide-de-camp he had met earlier came to express to Frederick his majesty's wish to speak with him. The Kaiser received him standing, in his private room.[i]"Tell me Frederick why you do not approve of my going to Austria?"[/i] the Kaiser asked. Frederick replied hurriedly [i]"I do not like the Austrians my Kaiser, they do not deserve our respect or kindness. Many Prussians died because of the 7 years war and the war of the Austrian Succession."[/i] The Kaiser replied "[i]That may be so but everyone deserve's a second chance, would you not agree?"[/i]. Frederick nodded his head softly and left the room somewhat disappointed.

The Kaiser immediately asked his Secretary to call the Austrian Foreign Ministry to arrange a diplomatic meeting between himself and the Empress. The young secretary got on the phone and began to fulfill the Kaiser's request. Later that evening the Kaiser and his entourage were on a plane heading to Vienna with the best of intentions.

Edited by Chancellor Patrick
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"Your Highness?" Frederich Kant called out as he walked across the garden of Hofburg Palace towards where Maria was seated with a young man from the Vienna Conservatory. Both had violins in their hands looking at music sheets that were barely held in place on account of the wind. The Foreign Minister sighed as he held the Prussian Missive in his hands and felt the damp grass bleeding through the soles of his shoes. "I don't mean to disturb you music lesson, but this letter arrived from the Prussian Foreign Ministry earlier today. The Prussian Kaiser requests an audience with you."

Maria looked up from Haydn's Violin Concerto and sneered at the disruption before snatching the letter out of Kant's hands. "You mean the 'Prussians'? Kant, don't call them as such, they aren't Prussian, they're Bohemian or something. Sudetendeutsch, perhaps, but they are most definitely not Prussian. Or at least not Prussians that I will recognize as such." She turned to the young musician, smiled and kissed him gently on the cheek. "I will be back later Anton, your Empress has other things she has to take care of."

"Of course Your Majesty. My thanks for serenading me this morning." Said Anton as he picked himself up from the chair and headed out of the garden.

Maria watched him the rest of the way before turning back to the aging Kant. "So the misguided Bohemians want to meet?"

"This evening actually, Your Highness, shall I tell Frau Erksine to prepare a light dinner for the Kaiser's arrival?"

Maria nodded and clasped her hands behind her back. "Yes, that would be fine, but nothing large, I'm really not in the mood for a large banquet."

"Of course, Highness, I will send a missive to the Prussian Kaiser right away. He should be here in the early evening."

---

That evening the Kaiser's motorcade would be received in Vienna and all around his entourage the sounds of Austria's classical glory was in full swing. Haydn, Mozart, and Strauss called beautifully out from the opera houses, symphony halls, and theaters of the city. The streets of the capital were packed with young and old, lovers and romantics both, some poets and writers, being deserving of the cultural capital of Europe, saved by God's hand from the recent nuclear explosions across the world. From the center of Vienna, the Prussian entourage would be escorted towards the gates of Hofburg Palace where at the front steps, the Kaiser and his associates would be greeted by Foreign Minister Kant.

"Your Highness, it is a pleasure to make your acquaintance and I would like to welcome you to Austria and Vienna. Her Majesty, Maria Magdalena von Hapsburg is in the palace conservatory, since it is the evening, she wanted a room that would give both of you the vantage of the night sky. If you would follow me, she is expecting you and your entourage."

Kant escorted the Kaiser through the gilded halls of Hofburg towards a large glass room that stood at the far west end of the palace. Inside, amidst statues of Greek gods, the burbling of marble fountains and the soft tunes of Mozart's Piano Serenade, Maria said at a white wire rimmed table with a cup of tea and a few plates of pastries. Upon the Kaiser's entrance, she stood and bowed her head softly.

"Kaiser Johann, it is a pleasure, congratulations on Prussia's independence from Dalmatia." She gestured to one of the seats at the table. "Please sit, you said you had things to talk to me about, what do I have the pleasure of your audience?"

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The Kaiser dressed in a Prussian uniform with a grand blue sash running across his tunic sat down and removed his Pickelhaube and placed it on his lap. He stroked back what few grey hairs he had left on his head and collapsed comfortably into his seat. The Kaiser gave a quick observation of his surroundings, especially focusing on the beautiful starlit sky above him.

[i]"Empress Maria, it is a pleasure finally meeting you"[/i] said the Kaiser.[i]"I thank you for congratulation on the creation of Prussia. We truly have worked hard to have it established."[/i] The Kaiser gently raised his cup of tea towards his mustache covered lips.
He drank a small amount and steadily lowered the cup to its original position.

[i]"Empress Maria, I wanted to discuss about the future relationship between Prussia and Austria. I believe it to be vital for good relations to exist between out two grand nations for development, peace, and prosperity."[/i] said the Kaiser with a smile on his face.

Frederick, who had come with the Kaiser to Vienna as a advisor, gave a facial expression of disgust for all to see. He despised the idea of cooperation with the Austrians. "[i]May I suggest we first discuss a trade agreement between Prussia and Austria?"[/i] asked the Kaiser. Frederick now boiling with disgust shouted [i]"Surly you my Kaiser you cannot be serious, trading with these barbarians!?"[/i]

The Kaiser turned around and looked at Frederick with disappointment and anger. He spoke in his deep Prussian voice and said [i]"FREDERICK! Hold your tongue, you do not know of what you speak!"[/i] Frederick replied [i]"Oh please Kaiser, we defeated these fools at Sadowa in 1886 and it lasted hardly lasted seven weeks. Also we must not forget Leuthen during the seven years war. Ha! They were and still are such weak fools!"[/i]

Edited by Chancellor Patrick
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Having dealt with Empress Ariadne of the Athenian Federation, the behavior of the Kaiser's advisor was not at all phasing to the Austrian ruler. Maria politely turned towards Fredrick and raised her right index finger. "Sir, I do not know who you are, however, I respectfully ask that you mind your manners. You are, after all, in my home, eating my food and I am giving you my company. Now, those wars of what you speak of are ancient business and Austria holds no will against Prussia for things done in the past. After all, there are other things that we could bring up to discredit our German neighbors. You being in the Sudetenland and calling yourself Prussian is just one of many Herr Fredrick. If you please, your Kaiser and myself have actual business to discuss and if you interrupt us again I will have you removed."

Turning back towards the Kaiser, Maria smiled and took another sip of her tea. "I apologize Your Highness, now, a trade agreement between Austria and Prussia would be just fine. We are recovering a bit ourselves from the recent disaster, but damage was kept at a minimum. Plus with resources coming in from across our Commonwealth, this is the perfect time for trade. Though I do hope that you didn't come all this way just for a trade proposal."

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[i]"My dear Empress"[/i] said the Kaiser in a soft voice. [i]"First I would like to apologize for my advisors terrible manners, and second I would like to point out that many Prussians, Germans, and Austrians migrated to our area of Bohemia."[/i] the Kaiser paused for a second and continued. [i]"These people's found a great sense of Germanic unity and they all decided to declare their independence and name their nation after a proper German power. We may not be in our original homeland but we would like you to respect us as Prussian until one day we do return."[/i] But of course the Kaiser waited for the Empress Maria's response to his statement. He decided to eat a few pastries and take a sip of his tea, anticipating her reply.

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"It isn't a problem Your Highness and I apologize if my remarks hit a soft spot for you. Your advisor's behavior hit a soft spot with me. But I can assure you from this point on that Prussia will have Austria's full respect for their geographic location. While I think the Kaiser of Bohemia may be less confusing to some, no one should dictate your heart or your people's heart concerning their homeland."

She straightened up in her chair, folded her hands over her lap and smiled, her teeth bright under the night sky. "All that aside, Your Highness, you spoke about a trade proposal, one that Austria would be happy to accept. Beyond that, is there anything else you'd like to discuss?"

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The Kaiser pleased with the statement given by Empress Maria decided to put forward his next proposal. But before the Kaiser did so, he asked Frederick to leave the room and wait outside. With the Empress and Kaiser now alone, Johann decided to continue.

"[i]My Dear Empress, the next matter I propose is an delicate one, what I am referring to is a form of Political Union."[/i] the Kaiser once again took a sip of his delicious Austrian tea, before going on. [i]"I know Prussia is quite a young nation, and Austria a stable power but we have something in common. This thing is our common Germanic identity, something that both our nations share. Therefor I suggest Austria and Prussia create a new league, a league I would like to call the 'Österreichische Preußische Allianz'."[/i]

Edited by Chancellor Patrick
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Maria leaned her head back and sighed. For the past few months since the collapse of the United Kingdom, Austria had taken a path of neutrality away from European affairs. The problem was of course that Europe and the world continued to progress and battle each other and trying to isolate one's self, especially in the middle of Europe was near impossible. A rumor had been brought up before, during the chaos creeping over the British Isles that the Germanic Union had moved to pledge a new alliance, that of Germanic countries seeking a common bond. With the Zurich Pact returned to its previous power there was no need for such a pact, however, an alliance with Prussia alone seemed futile, especially when there was little interaction with the rest of the European Community.

"While I appreciate the offer, Kaiser Johann, a single alliance between our states would be futile, when we could perhaps join with the larger European community. I know that you have been denied from the Zurich Pact because of the youth of your nation. However, if I were to propose Austria join Zurich under the condition that Prussia join with us, I believe those bureaucrats in London and Berlin would reconsider their stance. If not, then perhaps we can both look towards Southern Europe for friendship. But us in the middle, there are larger blocs that we could join, rather than try and create our own. Would you be against either of these ideas?"

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The Kaiser placed his hand on his forehead and rubbed his hair around. After considering the Empress Maria's proposal he spoke. [i]"I believe your proposal of joining Zurich with Austria is acceptable, it is quite a interesting proposal"[/i] The Kaiser relaxed his posture and continued. [i]"Although there is one more thing I am concerned about, this is GNED. They are claiming influence over our nation because they claim its Slavic. What do you think?"[/i]

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Maria sighed, it was one of the issues that the Austrian Parliament had been harking on. In truth, Parliament disagreed with the doctrine, citing that it would cause unnecessary problems in Eastern Europe and perhaps bring Austria unneeded conflicts in the future. On the other hand, the Dalmatians were allies of the Empire and as such, the alliance needed to be backed, especially when the doctrine didn't interfere with Austrian affairs.

"Well I think the words are a little messed up, I believe the doctrine that the Dalmatians issued is more of a path to their fathership of Eastern Europe, of which, Prussia belongs. So while you are in their sphere of influence, I wouldn't go as far as to say they consider you Slavic. I'm afraid though I don't have much to speak on the matter, at the moment Austria has her own problems with spheres of influence and fitting into the larger European tapestry. My government at least desires neutrality above all else, but I'm sure that both Austria and Prussia will work themselves into the European Community as to be successful. I am sure Prussia will turn out okay, no matter what doctrine Dalmatia might issue."

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[i]"Well then my Empress, I have no more to discuss. I believe these talks were fruitful and a new section of Austro-Prussian relations has begun."[/i] The Kaiser stood up and put back on his Pickelhaube. The Johann then shook the Empress hand and said [i]"I bid you farewell"[/i] He continued outside to meet with his entourage and enter into the motorcade waiting outside to take him to Vienna's International airport.

------

Later that night on his flight back to Prussia, Kaiser Johann asked his advisors where the Duke Frederick of Pilsen was. No one could answer him as they did not know. The Kaiser now suspicious and worried reached for the telephone in front of his Secretary. Just as he was dialing the number of the Austrian Foreign Ministry a bright light blinded the sight of the Kaiser, and a large explosion engulfed the plane.

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