The mock United Nations conference room, which was really just a college lecture hall, felt a lot like a congested highway. You could see the traffic backed up from across the divide and you’d be struck with both sympathy and relief–but mostly relief. Here, Asia would be the long line of backed-up traffic. South America, Africa, and good chunk of the rest of the world looked on with apologetic smiles while thinking to themselves, ‘Wow, I’m glad I don’t live near North Korea.’ Western Europe, at least the German speaking parts of it, wouldn’t be the sympathetic driver or the unfortunate bastard stuck behind fifty cars. They would be the weird car pulled over to the shoulder because they couldn’t stop arguing over which gas station to stop at and needed to take a breather. (Besides, Germany had been threatening to turn the car around since they pulled out of the driveway.)
“I say it’s about time we got ours. You in?”
Austria crossed her arms and cocked her head ever so slightly to the side. “What is it that you want us to join, exactly?”
South Africa announced proudly, “The Coalition of Underappreciated States Who are Just as Important as the World Powers.”
Australia kindly added, “We’re calling it the Coalition, for short!”
South Africa elaborated. “We’re not going to sit back and let the United States, China, and other big powers engineer the future of our world for us. We already have a robust team of promising countries on our side! Brazil, Romania, Egypt, Hong Kong, Australia, and me.”
Austria raised a brow. “Promising, you said?”
“Sorry,” Switzerland replied. “My stance of political neutrality in times of war says I shouldn’t, and my lack of caring agrees.”
“I’ll do it,” Liechtenstein said after a beat of silence. “I’m small, and not very popular–I don’t even think most people know I exist or how to spell my name… But, if I can make a difference and stop a terrible nuclear war, I want in!”
And so, a stupidly optimistic Liechtenstein joined the Coalition. But not before saying goodbye.
He looked between Switzerland and Austria almostly sheepishly now that he’d left their little group. “Good luck figuring this whole thing out. I know the European Union is kind of screwy, but… if anyone can solve a world-wide disaster, it’ll be Switzerland. And Austria too, I guess.” Then he looked to Germany, stared at him for several seconds like he felt obligated to say something but didn’t want to, ended up saying nothing at all, then turned away awkwardly.
“Hey,” Switzerland said. “It’s a mean world out there. Remember what I taught you. And always use protection. By that, I mean you have to keep your borders secure. But also, use a condom because–”
At that, an embarrassed Liechtenstein promptly spun around and took off after Australia and South Africa.