Setting:- Ancient Italy

Characters:-

Hero- Alistair (meaning 'mans defender')

Allie- Rosabel (child hood friend)

Ideal Partner- Rosabel

Mentor- Saggio (swords master, name meaning 'wise')

Evil guy- Diavolo De Tenebre (Father, name meaning 'devil of darkness')

Fighting Destiny

The dirt picked itself up off the ground swirling through the air encircling what is to become a deathly battle. One will fall and one will stand victorious. Their feet moved swiftly across the ground in slow, cautious movements. Their eyes locked upon each other, each intent on killing. As the silver blades of their majestic swords meet, the battle picks up and begins. Each highly skilled, they read the other's moves as they duck, jump and attack over and over. Their feet keep them moving in a beat, such like a dance; only a dance with one left standing. Sweat drip off his brow landing on the unsettled ground. Although they both strike with ease, only the better will win. Within a few long minutes, the other falls. He stands over him sword at throat. His dark eyes lock onto his once again. Then without warning, he starts to laugh....

"You are becoming better young Alistair. Stronger as the days pass," Saggio comments as he sits down still catching his breath from the battle moments ago.

"Thank you master, I only hope I am proving myself worthy and in time I will be a great swordsman." Alistair replied "I ask, why you must ruin my fun after I have beaten y...."

Saggio interrupted Alistair's rant "Ah, but young one, no one has truly won a battle until only one walks away. Though you may be getting better, there is still a lot for you to learn if you want to be the great swordsman your father once was. How many times may I tell you to call me Saggio, I am no master and should be addressing you by thy title."

"My father may have been a great swordsman but, never was he a great man. And for that I will never forgive him," the anger rising through Alistair's voice was the least bit content "He ruined our family." He whispered the last bit so Saggio could only barely hear.

A silence erupted around them until finally someone spoke.

"Is everything alright? Am I interrupting anything?" The soft sweet voice of Rosabel lifted the tension as she walked toward Alistair enclosing him in a hug.

"No, no everything is fine dear Alistair just lost once again to me."

The atmosphere became lighter as an easy conversation started. The day continued as the sky grew darker and the moon and stars filled it with an array of patterns and light. Alistair and Rosabel walked back to Blair Castle. Alistair's home.

Calmly strolling along the long lane way toward the Castle gates Alistair and Rosabel initiated another casual conversation.

"So, after 17 years of knowing you as the dirty boy who thought growing up were a stupid decision, you all of a sudden do. Why?" Rosabel started, curious to know Alistair's reply.

He only sighed. "We all have to eventually and I guess my time has come. Next Sunday I become King. The foolish thing is I do not even want it. I mean, sure it is the greatest honour, the Son of Diavolo finally to become King. But, I do not see it that way. I do not want to be like him." Alistair was talking to himself more than Rosabel for he thought he needed to convince himself.

Rosabel put a reassuring hand on his shoulder. "You were never like him. Nor will you ever be like him."

They lapsed into silence again. Entering the great Gates surrounding the enormous castle Rosabel suddenly stopped frozen in place. Alistair turned to look at her.

"Something is not right. It is too dark and silent. Where is everyone?" She had a gift, and knew when things were not good. Alistair took a good look and soon agreed.

Slowly they crept into the large seemingly empty castle without a creak or breathe to be heard. There was no sign of his mother or his dear sister. Lying on a nearby marble table Alistair saw a parchment envelop addressed to him. He opened the envelope to find a letter written in a practiced hand:-

Alistair,

Your mother and sister have joined those before us in the great skies. Why you may ask? Tis because it has to be. You will be the next to fall at my power for only I truly am a King. The greatest of them all. When I have finished you, the castle shall bow to me once again.

All that ran through Alistair's head was pure anger and resentment to whoever hurt his family? His mother and sister were gone. He was going to hurt whoever did this. He felt inside the package once again and found a small passage written in the same hand:-

Diavolo De Tenebre,

that is my name.

You want avengement,

play my game.

Hidden in a place

Where strange things walk,

The shadows dance

And darkness stalks.

He knew where he was, he knew who he was....... He knew he was not going to win.

He rode fast on Thunderflash, the horse's hoofs hitting the ground hard. They were deep within the dark, haunted woods. Within a short while they would be at the large battlefield opening that has been carved into the woods for centuries. Thunderflash galloped the last few meters and came to a holt.

Alistair got off the horse, and briefly looked around. There standing in the middle of the battlefield was Diavolo. Alistair fixed his gaze on him and met Diavolo's cold eyes, a sly smirk rising on his face. Then without notice Alistair leaped forward an engaged in real deathly battle.

Alistair's attack took Diavolo by surprise and forced him to stumble backward before quickly regaining himself and meeting Alistair's sword with his own. It was a loud, dirty battle and Alistair knew he was not yet the skilled fighter Diavolo was. But, with no hesitation he kept going, driven by the anger toward the man that killed his beloved. Diavolo thrust his sword at Alistair and sliced his arm, forcing him to drop the sword. He took advantage of that moment and knocked him down.

Diavolo towered over Alistair's body on the ground. "You are very weak my boy." Diavolo laughed in his face throwing his head back at the same time.

Now it was Alistair's turn to take advantage of the situation and brought his legs up to full forcedly kick Diavolo in the stomach this time causing him to fall back dropping his sword.

Alistair brought his glistening sword, to Diavolo's throat. "Not weak enough to defeat you........father," Alistair whispered before turning away. He had won the battle he had been waiting for; only not without loss.

Alistair was woken by a tender kiss on his cheek.

"Wake up my King," Rosabel's sing-song voice rang in his ear.

"For you, always," Alistair replied with a kiss on her lips.

It had been a few years since the encounter with Diavolo his once-great-King of a father and ever since he banished him from his land Alistair's life has only gotten better. Rosabel and he were married shortly after he was acclaimed King, and with him as the ruler Italy has become a greater place.

Alistair calmly walked through the meadow at the back of the castle and stopped at the giant oak tree where two grey tombstones sit side by side. He bent down and gently rested two roses at the base of each tombstone.

"A yellow rose for my darling sister, for she was as bright as the sun. A red rose for my beautiful mother, for she was vibrant and filled with love."

A tear rolled down Alistair's face and he smiled knowing they would be so very proud of him. It took him a while to overcome his family's death. But, he knew it would be better for him not to mourn them. So he got up turned around and walked away only to come back again tomorrow with a yellow and red rose.

Alistair was and would always be a brother, a son and a great King.