"Mama, can I go to Shaunnee's house to play after dinner?" The little girl shoveled spoonful after spoonful of food into her mouth as her heels happily kicked the chair she was sitting on. The woman who was also eating her dinner looked at the little girl reproachingly. The little girl immediately ceased her unladylike movements and sheepishly smiled at her mother.

"I suppose that would be alright, so long as you agree to practice a little archery when you return." The woman slowly ate her dinner as the little girl thought about what her mother had proposed. The girl considered and agreed to her mother's condition with a short nod of her head. Seeing this, the woman smiled and continued to eat her dinner.

"Be no later than the ninth bell." The little girl nodded as she watched her mother clear the table. Before she left to her friend's house she approached her mother and gave her a peck on the cheek.

"See you later mama!" The young girl began to happily run out of the house before abruptly stopping and turning toward her mother.

"I will definitely practice my archery when I get back!" Seeing her mother's responding smile the girl finally left to go see her friend.

After the little girl left the woman still stood at the same spot staring at the closed door. Slowly the woman lifted her hands and looked at how rough they had become. Though her job had required great skill in the past, it had not truly required hard labor. Now after so many years had passed, her once youthful and soft hands showed signs of wear and of age. She closed her hands into fist sand tears fell from her eyes slowly as she remembered the past.

She remembered the last time she had seen her Queen. At that time, her Queen had been so weak after having been slashed many times by the swords of the traitors. Despite the pain the Queen had felt, she had protected her baby until she had found her way to the underground maze located within the sewer system. Only the royal family and a few very trusted guards knew the layout of the maze.

The Queen had sent her away to look for the King, despite being the Queen's guard she obeyed the Queen's order and left her. She had never regretted anything else in her life more than having made that choice!

She had searched for the king but had not found him. After that she had entered the maze to search for the Queen, but… When she went to the maze, the Queen had not been there like she had promised. To this day Leal still did not know why the Queen had not immediately gone to the maze. To this day Leal still did not know who had mortally wounded her precious Master.

As the Queen's guard, her number one priority was always the Queen. The Queen knew how loyal her royal guard was, for that reason she had bestowed the title 'Leal' on her personal guard and everyone referred to her guard by that title. Leal was known for always being by the Queen's side, ready to protect the Queen from any and all danger.

But that day Leal failed in her duty. Not only was she unable to find and save the King, but because she had left the Queen alone, the Queen also had not survived.

*Leal means loyal