"You know how to control people mummy? Use their fears."
England doesn't dignify his son with a response. The small boy climbs onto his lap and smiles, trying to get his attention. "Mummy!"
"Yes dear?" England asks, and his maternal instincts kick in, wrapping his arms around the small child on his lap with red, crazy eyes.
"You used people's fears to make yourself an empire, didn't you mummy?"
He doesn't answer that question either, choosing instead to tickle Oceania, who collapses into giggles. For a moment, England's mouth twitches. Then the happiness is gone as his son looks back up at him.
"Fear is the key to destroying Eastasia..." He says. "Mummy, can I have a biscuit?"
"No, silly! You just ate."
"But biscuit!" wails Oceania, and England wonders how this small boy could be so threatening, could have destroyed his country, renamed him and turned his home into a prison built especially for him. Oceania begins wriggling like a worm on his lap. "Want biscuit! Biscuit!"
"I'm feeling hungry too," England says thoughtfully. "I think I'll eat up... a little boy." Oceania goes still. "Oceania, do you see any little boys?"
"No," Oceania sings, playing along.
"Well well... I think I'll just have to eat this little boy then - " But Oceania is up and off his lap, running away from him. England grins and runs after him, chasing him through the house until, with a soft tumble, they land on the bed together. Oceania giggles, holding onto England. England nuzzles his cheek and he shrieks. "Nom nom nom!"
"EEEEEEEE!" he squeals, "Don't eat me! I'll be a good boy, promise!"
But you weren't good to the rest of the world, were you?
"Hmm... OK. I'm not so hungry anymore for little boys. In fact, I think I'll have a biscuit!" he says, getting up to go to the kitchen. Oceania scrambles after him, tiny legs barely keeping up. He hangs off England's waist as England gets himself and his son a biscuit.
England looks down to see Oceania cuddling him like a bear. His clothes are soft but they're not that soft. "Hey sweetie, here's a biscuit -"
Instantly, England panics. "Where? Does it hurt bad? Do you need a doctor? Do you need a plaster? Do you want mummy to -"
"So that's your greatest fear," Oceania says, blinking his red eyes at England. "Seeing me get hurt. And by extension, all of your children."
England freezes, but Oceania continues. "So if you don't want me to get hurt, then you won't hurt me will you? That means you won't rebel. That means you can't join the resistance, because the resistance will hurt me. That means you'll be a good mummy and support everything I do, right?"
England is speechless. In one hand he still has the biscuit, which Oceania takes. He eats it, still watching his mother almost innocently, but something dark lurks behind. He takes England's hand and leads him to a room.
"Angleterre?" It's France, tied up and beaten up. He looks up with hope at England. England's barely taken a step towards him when Oceania speaks again.
"You won't speak to him, mummy. Or go to him. He's part of the rebel group. Every word he says to you in French about the rebellion is a hit to me. And everything he does tell you, you say to me."
"Angleterre -" France goes off in French, about where the rebel groups are hiding and what their next attack is. Slowly, Oceania's eyes start bleeding.
"Stop!" cries England, kneeling beside his son, trying to stop the bleeding. "Stop, you're hurting him!"
"He's not hurt," spits France. "Look at him!" And it's true. Oceania hasn't flinched. England stands up.
"What... What else have you go-"
"I see I will have to do this roughly," Oceania sighs. He starts growing. His clothes stretch and in some parts rip, but they were too baggy for him in the first place anyway. Soon he's towering over England as a young man. He glares down at his mother, who is pressed against the wall, looking at his son, terrified. France's shouts go unnoticed.
"You will NOT disobey me. You will stay here, lower your head and remain quiet. If HE -" He points to France - "Tells you anything, you are to tell me, whether it's rebel related or not. You will be silent in the presence of others unless I tell you to speak. And..." He hesitates, then places a hand on his mother's cheek. "If they hurt you... Whether ally or enemy, you must scream out for me. I will not tolerate anyone taking advantage of you."
England nods, voice lost.
"Now, what did the Frenchman tell you about the rebels?"
England gulps. "H-he didn't say anything about them."
Oceania looks down at him, calculating. Then he sighs. "Fine. Because this is the first time, I will not press you for information. You should lie down upstairs. Stress isn't good for your health." The two leave the room, England casting a desperate glance back at France. Oceania is behind him the entire time, and pushes him into the bedroom. "Sleep," he orders, like when he ordered England to sleep when he was taking over the world.
England sits down on the bed, watching as the doors shut with a click. He sees the camera in the corner of the room, watching his every movement. The window is bolted shut and beyond that, the gates stretch high and spiky. Guards patrol the perimeter and there are more cameras outside.
And as he lies down, he realises that he's totally sealed in.