My sword cut effortlessly through the creature before me, blood spattering into the grass below. I'd been trained to be unfeeling on the battlefield, but a small part of me still felt remorse in taking lives, even if it was necessary. My ponytailed golden-brown hair whipped around with the winds from the oncoming storm, the gray, ominous skies paralleling the dark mood that had settled over the grounds. I reached up to quickly push my hair back from my face, cutting another beast down with one swing of my blade. My attention was freed for the moment, so I took the time to survey the damage. Countless bodies littered the blood-soaked earth, the smell of despair prominent in the air. My eyes automatically searched the faces for anyone I knew, but I forced them up to gaze instead on the faces of the living. I sensed someone behind me, but I couldn't get a reading on their intent. Panic set in; I spun around quickly, sword at the ready, and settled my eyes on the man before me.

"Aiden," I breathed a sigh of relief. "You scared the hell out of me."

"Sorry, love," he said, emerald eyes sparkling. His gaze lingered over the rather large cut in my abdomen.

"I'm fine," I murmured, but his hands were already brushing the wound, feather-light, blue, pulsating magic seeping into my wound. "You need to save your energy," I continued, even though I knew nothing I said could sway his action.

"Already done," was his cheeky reply, removing his hands from my side and taking my hands in his. I rolled my eyes at him, before smiling slightly. I couldn't help it, really; despite all the pain and negative intention I could feel from the people around me, he could still brighten my day. "Do you need to rest?" Aiden asked, glancing around to see if enemies approached.

"No, really, I'm fine," I replied. "I drank some of that energy potion Tariana gave me. Honestly, you worry too much about me for your own good. I'm afraid you'll get hurt while you're distracted with me…" I trailed off.

"Ellie…" he whispered, tilting my chin up with one finger, forcing my violet eyes to lock with his emerald ones. "You know why I am so protective of you, don't you?" he questioned, a bit of humor lacing his deep voice.

"Well, you love me," I said slowly, a slight blush appearing on my cheeks.

"Yes, that is very true," he chuckled. "I do love you. But honestly, Ellie, I couldn't stand to lose you. You must know how important you are to me."

"I—I do," I said, fingering the small, golden band on my left ring finger. "I know."

"I'm glad," he said. He leaned down and kissed the crown of my head, before putting his lips to my ear and whispering "Be careful, my love." With that he turned on his heel and shoved his sword through an approaching enemy I hadn't even sensed.