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A French peasant stood in the middle of the town square in the city of Paris. He appeared to be in his twilight years, and haggard at that. Despite this, the man was actually middle-aged. The years of conflict, famine, disease, and poverty had stripped away what little youth he had left in his body, leaving but a feeble old man in its place.

This man was preaching his honest thoughts about the current Kingdom of France and its ruling family. Something that could easily get him a death sentence. Despite this, the Man-at-Arms, who acted as the Garrison of the city, did not make a move, and instead joined the crowd that had gathered as they listened to the old man speak.

"I see you all gathered here, huddled together, and starving. Broken by the wars that have ravaged our lands for the last few decades. In the East, Burgundy has been split in two. Half of it lies in the Reich, and in those lands, the people feast on delicacies that only our most wealthy of nobles can dream of affording. They live carefree lives devoid of pestilence, crime, and bloodshed.

While disease and starvation ravage our half of those lands! Brigands roam throughout our entire Kingdom free to act with impunity. And why shouldn't they? There is no Army to keep the King's peace! The King's peace, now that is the most laughable phrase I have ever heard in my life.

What is the King's peace? I'll tell you what it is! King Aubrey de Valois sits in his high castle, surrounded by his knightly lovers, and feasts on what little food remains in our Kingdom. All while his people suffer from the choices that he has made.

Make no mistake, my brothers and sisters, the reasons the Germans hate us, and do not provide our common people with support that we so desperately need, is strictly because of the sins of our King, and his wicked family!

In the Reich they curse the Kingdom of France, and its people, as degenerate two faced instigators. They have no sympathy for our people, and why should they? What have we as a people done for Germany, other than spit in the face of their Kaiser's good graces, and attack them unprovoked!

The only reason our Kingdom still exists is because the English betrayed us in Jerusalem! Perhaps it would have been better if the Germans invaded our lands, and deposed our King like they have done to their other enemies!

The Normans know this to be true. It is why they have taken up arms against their noble masters, and have declared their independence. Not only as a State but as a people! What little remains of the Duke's army can not contend with the power that the masses hold.

The people of Normandy are rioting, rebelling against the rule of the Nobles whose incompetence, and perhaps outright malice, has led them to such horrific conditions. And they are not the only ones. In the south, the Duchy of Aquitaine faces an unprecedented threat.

Tens of thousands of Catholic refugees flee the Iberian Peninsula, in search of religious freedom. They bring with them nothing but crime and poverty. And the good people of Aquitaine have had enough. Violent conflicts are occurring between these refugees and the local population as we speak. Who will win? Only God can decide!

Flanders and Calais have been seized by the Reich, and with it, they have seen a new age of prosperity. Within a hundred years, the people of that territory will be no different from the Germans in Kufstein! Perhaps a slight dialectal difference, but make no mistake, they are converting to the German faith, culture, and language at a rapid rate.

My friends, we were once no different from the Germans. Our ancestors emerged from the east of the Rhine and conquered this land from the Romans, creating a Germanic Kingdom who was unrivaled in those years. However, the Catholic Church has done more than just drag us down with them. They have made us into an unholy offspring of Rome, and I think it is about time we rectify that.

Frankia, that was the name we once held, when we were Germans. And if we wish to remain a unified Kingdom, and not a broken mess of smaller states. Then we must revert back to the old ways. The old tongue, the old culture, and perhaps even the old gods?

It is time for the French to perish from this world, and for the Franks to reclaim their ancient glory! First, we must bring down this wretched King, and this dynasty of blasphemers! Then we will throw ourselves at the mercy of the Germans, and ask them to teach us in the ways of our ancestors so that we may reunite with our shared heritage!"

The crowd erupted in cheers and shouted their own slogans such as "Death to the King!" "Down with France!" "Restore Frankia!" etc. Among the members of this crowd were Linde's agents, who were quite surprised by this turn of events.

The speaker was a native Frenchman who had been recruited into the service of the Kaiser. However, he was supposed to give a speech about the destruction of France and the rise of smaller independent states based upon shared culture and dialect. Instead, he had done a complete one-eighty and spoke about reclaiming their lost German heritage. However, before the Agents could interfere, the speaker had continued his rant.

"Take whatever weapons you may find and march with me to the castle. It is time we bring an end to this dynasty of sinners! Off with their heads!"

What started as a small crowd of curious peasants immediately turned into a giant enraged mob. Even the city's guards were on their sides, as they took the front position, unafraid of whatever knights may be guarding Aubry.

The angry mob marched through the streets of Paris heading towards King Aubry's castle with the intent of executing him and his family. As for the German agents, they stayed behind and quickly got on their portable telegraph, sending a distinct message back to Imperial Intelligence.

Balkanization has failed, adjust strategy for total Germanization of France.

Within minutes, this message reached Berengar's desk as he gazed upon the entire correspondence in shock. He quickly called out to Linde, who had given him the message with a hint of fury in his mismatched eyes.

"How did this happen? Weren't your agents supposed to ensure total Balkanization of the realm? Why now are the people of France marching to usurp Aubry and place a German King on the throne?"

Linde held her head low, seemingly without an answer to this question. She quickly voiced what little she knew about the situation, in an attempt to make up for her failure. For years, she and Berengar had planned to dismantle French identity and create a bunch of border states which could not pose a threat to the Reich under any possible circumstances.

Though the Germanization of France posed some unique advantages, Berengar was not a fan of his plans, resulting in failure. Thus he was quite enraged by the very prospect that the French People could be returned to their Germanic heritage. As for Linde, she tried to persuade her husband to adapt to their current circumstances.

"My only guess is that the man we selected to give the speech of Balkanization has betrayed us, and instead sees a better fate for his people through re-germanization. It's not entirely an unfounded concept. Many of the French territories favor Germany and its people over their own Kingdom. Especially after we seized Flanders and Burgundy, turning them into economic powerhouses.

The only people who really care about the cultural identity of France are the nobility. If we can overthrow them and replace them with Germans, the people will quickly follow. Within a few decades, France will be speaking German, and will have reclaimed their identity as Franks. Similar to what you have planned for Bohemia, Flanders, and Burgundy. It's not a bad alternative, though it is a bit unexpected."

Berengar rested his chin on his knuckles as he contemplated what this meant. Theoretically, if the Franks were to re-germanize, they could be incorporated into the German Empire within the next few hundred years as just another German state.

Meaning the only threat his descendents would have to worry about in the west would be Al-Andalus, which would be ruled by a cadet branch of his dynasty. Perhaps the re-germanization of France was the greatest vengeance the German people could ask for. After thinking upon this for several moments, Berengar sighed heavily before giving an order to Linde that she was not expecting.

"We must Re-adjust our plans for France. I want you to arm these so called Frankish rebels with whatever arquebuses, and muskets we have left in our stores. Meanwhile, you are to put out propaganda so that the Franks desire a member of the von Kufstein Dynasty to be their new King. Perhaps one of my sons with Henrietta will one day be the King of the Franks. Either way, a member of my dynasty needs to sit on their throne when he comes of age."

Linde scoffed when she heard this before questioning Berengar's mind.

"Sons? Currently, you only have a son and a daughter with your sister. Are you telling me you want more children with her?"

Berengar gazed at Linde as if the question was merely preposterous before responding to her.

"Of course, Heidi is my beloved daughter with my darling little sister, but Lukas needs at least one little brother from the same mother. Besides, Henrietta is still young, she can easily bear more children. Anyway, that's not important right now. Just make sure this little change of plans doesn't blow up in our descendents' faces."

Linde took notice of the words "our descendents" and smiled before bowing her head with reverence. By what Berengar had just said, she could surmise that the man had already decided on Hans to be his heir, even if it wasn't publically announced. Though things could change at any moment, Linde would make sure that it was her precious firstborn that succeeded his father. Thus, she was in a particularly good mood after hearing this.

"I will ensure that the transition from France to Frankia is smooth. You do not need to worry about a thing..."

After saying this, the redheaded beauty departed from the Kaiser's quarters, leaving the man alone with his thoughts.