The blood splattered my face. I lifted my arm and smeared it away with the back of my hand. Suddenly I felt a presence behind me and I quickly turned around and saw a man ready to kill me. It was all happening so fast, and I knew I couldn't do anything, I knew I would die.

Out of nowhere a sword cleanly cut off the man's head. I looked and saw a young man there, no older than me. His eyes were filled with so much sadness of what I knew not, a sad life or maybe the effects of war?

"Thanks." I whispered hoarsely and then ran off in the direction of screaming. I jumped over a body and sliced a man through the stomach. I knew I had to keep fighting, we had almost won. Ever since Chartieth people had started to invade our land there had been so many battles and we could not afford one loss. My sword was a huge sword and people wondered how I could carry it for hours and use it so gracefully. One day I woke up and found the sword wrapped in a cloth next to me. A lot of strange things like that would happen to me.

It took another three hours until we won the battle. I was exhausted and found my way to a doctor. All I had were cuts and bruises but next to me I saw the boy that had saved me unconscious and with a foot long cut on his arm that looked bad. I left and found the camp where the soldiers were sleeping. I wasn't an official soldier but I fought with them and they granted me hospitality. I didn't have a permanent home.

I saw the boy again as we were eating dinner with a bandage around his arm. I walked up to him and sat next to him.

"Thanks for earlier. For saving my life I mean. My name is Lacrymosa."

He looked up quickly at me before answering, "Welcome. I am Martino. It was a problem naught."He said and then added, "You have a nice sword."

"Thank you."

We sat in silence for the rest of the meal, but it was not the uncomfortable kind. It was more of a companionship brought unexpectedly upon us.

I went to bed early and I was asleep before my head hit the pillow.

It was early in the morning and there was dew sparkling the grass and fog in the air when I woke up. I knew it was time to leave. The army did not need me anymore. As I started to leave I saw Martino sitting on a log looking out at the water.

"Leaving so soon?" Martino asked without looking at me. I started but did not falter in my steps. He continued, "I wonder why?"

"Alas Martino," I replied walking up to him slowly. "I know I am not needed here anymore."

"Can I come with you?" He asked, still without turning his head toward me. I glanced back behind me and saw all the peoples of Elthen making ready to leave. They were packing up their provisions and I watched as six or seven men piled up the dead and burned them as was their custom. I turned away not wanting to watch the burning corpses. I looked instead at my lifesaver, Martino. Even as he sat there on the rocks at the edge of the Elthen borders I could see his valiance and kingly figure. He was tall even sitting and his hair was slightly unruly, blonde strips covering his face. The armor he wore was not as thick as it was the previous day but he wore the Elthen mail and bore their shield and sword that lay at his side on his belt in its hilt, even so it was clear to me that his purpose in life as was mine was not with the peoples of Elthen as kind to us as they may have been.

"Why yes indeed you may," I said smiling a small sweet smile as he finally turned to me. He stood up then and took my mail clad arm and escorted me to the tent of the Elthen Captain.

"Captain Abbas," Martino said as we walked up to him as he spoke to a soldier of the country. He finished his orders to the soldier before he even glanced at us. To him we were naught but foreigners doing our world's good will. He stood there looking us over and waiting for Martino to speak again. "With your leave Captain," Martino began. "We are to leave Elthenia and move elsewhere."

The guard looked at them his eyes widening and beginning to laugh suddenly. I looked at Martino who returned my puzzled expression.

"My good Sir and Lady," he said still laughing. "You expect me to allow you to leave? You, strangers from distant lands who had so kindly offered to fight for us at free will and not tell us of your identities? You honestly expect me to just say thank you kindly for your honorable motives and allow you passage out of lands without consulting the king of Elthenia?" Captain Abbas looked at us sternly still with that glitter in his eye that showed all his amusement at the situation at hand.

"My good Captain," Martino replied keeping a calm tone though his eyes showed signs of irritation and impatience. "If you are so anxious to know of us I am Martino of the Saraseth land in the South and my companion and friend here is Lacrymosa."

"From Dessa," I added when Martino did not say more. Dessa was far from here and I had not been there for years. Despite its small island size it was well known for the power the small kingdom had. I had not exactly spoken to him of my lineage and home.

"And how is it that an Northern Lady and a Southern Man come to work as one?" the Captain inquired his eyes boring into ours as we stood there rotted to the spot.

"Martino save my life Captain," I replied after a short silence. "I am in his debt and he has asked to accompany me wherever I shall go. I have accepted his request and ask of you in kindest manner if you will allow us to take passage out of your lands so we may follow our own paths that clearly do not lie within the borders of Elthenia." Captain Abbas took a long while to consider our information but then as stubbornly as ever he shook his head and looked at them gravely. We both knew he was considering the possibility that we would betray Elthenia.

"I apologize, good friends," he said finally after looking at us sorrowfully. "But I cannot give you what you seek. I must do what it the will of the country and not just you or I. I will have to take you to the King of Elthenia and there you will tell him all you have told me and he will decide whether you go or stay." He turned then without another word signaling to some of his men to keep an eye on us. I looked at Martino who had an aggravated and exasperated expression written all over his face. He then nodded to me and went back to his rocks where I let him sit alone.