"Grandpa! Grandpa!" the call of little children could be heard throughout the house over the pounding rain outside.

"I'm back here," came the reply followed by the feet of the children. They found their grandpa in a back room adding wood to a low burning fire. The old man dusted off his hands and sat down in a near by wooden chair, "Now what is it you want little ones?"

"A story grandpa. It's raining outside and there's nothing else to do," a little boy with sad blue eyes and messy brown hair spoke.

"Ah, a story. Did you have something in mind Nicholas?"

"A story about a far away land. Somewhere that you haven't told us about."

"No something about lords and knights, please grandpa," the youngest child Jeffrey pleaded, his bright green eyes shinning with hope.

"But it has to have action and adventure. Someone doing something daring and standing up for what they believe is right," the oldest added brushing stray strands of blond hair out of his hazel eyes.

"Grandpa," came a light melodious voice from his side, "please tell us a story from history."

The grandpa looked down at his side into purple-blue eyes set in a face framed by auburn locks, much like what his own hair used to be. He thought for a moment before replying, "Yes Janessa, a story from history, one that should meet all of your demands. Have you ever heard of the Grim Reaper?"

"Abigail and others say it's a legend, but Old Man McKarthy says he was real," Nicolas answered.

"Yes," William agreed, brushing blonde hair out of his eyes once again to no avail, "He claims he was around before we became part of the Kelek Kingdom."

"McKarthy is a wise old man. You should listen to him. It is said that the Grim Reaper disappeared before this land, Sezubim, was given to King Ruben as a wedding gift."

"I know that story," Jeffrey interjected excitedly, "Two lords tried to take over the Kelek and Amana Kingdoms. Sezubim came with Queen Andora."

"Yes, that story actually has a lot to do with the Grim Reaper. At least lets say he played a part in that whole event that very few people know about," the grandpa has the children hanging on to his every word, eager for the story to begin, "Our story starts one fall day many years ago when James and his friends had snuck into the Lord's apple orchard…"

o0o0o

"Hurry up!" James called to his friends that were up in one of the many apple trees, "Someone is coming."

"You kids there, stop!" one of the two guards called finally spotting the kids, "Come back here with those apples!"

"Go, I'll slow them down," James told his friends as he shot off between the guards. One of the guards lunged for him crashing face first into the ground missing his target. The other guard stepped over his companion taking off after James, who ran further into the apple orchard.

James glanced over his shoulder to see how close the guards were. I can lose them easily. With that thought James rounded the bend to collide into something velvety soft. He looked up into Lord Robert's puzzled gaze. James quickly took a step back as he bowed his head.

"What do we have here?" Lord Robert questioned, "You don't look like any of the servant boys and you are defiantly not a page or trainee in those clothes."

"Sir, we caught him and his friends stealing apples," the guard that had fallen on his face said. He was having trouble breathing through his broken nose.

Lord Robert raised an eyebrow at the guards before asking, "And where are his friends? Did you capture them too?"

"He acted as a decoy so that they could get away," the other guard answered trying not to pant too much in front of his lord.

"Mm. I see. You can leave us now," Lord Robert commanded.

"Yes Sir," the guards chorused as they bowed. They turned around and went back to their patrolling. James glanced at the guards as they left, but still did not look at his lord.

"Why did you steal the apples?" Lord Robert inquired, "I make sure plenty of apples get out to the public."

At Lord Robert's kind, but stern and commanding tone, James looked up. He paused briefly before plowing ahead, "Yes, you do, but the orphans are the last ones that get to go though the apple carts and by then all that are left are the bruised and rotten apples. We just wanted to try some good apples…sir." James added at the end of talking.

"So you climb my walls to steal some apples. You do know stealing is not tolerated? People lose their hands if they are caught stealing," Lord Robert's face remained neutral the whole time, giving nothing away.

"We were just making sure we got some good apples. Just give out that many less apples to the public. If I might suggest so sir," James bravely ventured to say.

The lord seemed to toss this around in his head for a minute before continuing, "And why did you act as a decoy instead of running right along with your friends?"

"Why wouldn't I?" James asked back growing more confident with every passing moment once he saw the Lord had no intent to cut his hand off, "Who wouldn't help a friend in trouble?"

"Someone who isn't a true friend," James was shocked. He hadn't expected Lord Robert to answer.

"I guess so," James said before he became silent.

"Is there anything back at the orphanage that you need?" the Lord inquired.

James looked at the lord wondering where this was going before answering, "No sir."

"Then you can move right in."

"What do you mean?"

"You have to make up for stealing those apples somehow and you have shown me that you have the right qualities to become a trainee."

"A trainee?"

"Yes, you will serve me and my family."

"Really sir? I mean yes sir."

Lord Robert started walking down one of the paths with James on his heels, "What is your name boy?"

"James sir."

"Just James?"

"Well sir, I'm not sure if it is my last name but everyone calls me James Grim," the lord nodded his head to show he understood and continued on in silence.

Author Notes: Well what do you think? Should I keep on writting this story or bag it? I started writting this story a while ago but it's been ages since I last wrote anything so I'm hoping now that I have it posted it will get me to write more. I really like the story idea though so I'll probably keep it but let me know what you think. Thanks for reading. Now please review.