A lost princess is found; the world clock begins again. Prologue.
My mother and father wrote their accounts years ago; starting as soon as they could write and ending before they knew it was time to go home to the invisible warrior's tribe.
It is always our practice to pass down our historical accounts, not to keep traditions but to learn from past mistakes and make better decisions. In this thousands-years-war, we know not when we will die, much less if we would have a child to remember our legacies.
It is only fitting that I write my account now, after starting a new life with my husband. I cannot, however begin a new life without first referencing the old.
My Dear Child,
You were born to a long line of warriors for the King of Leorrin. A kingdom neighboring this one claims it does not even exist, yet here you are--living proof.
You will call me mother, but my name is Bazyli, Stephanie, Ethan, Leorrin, Gratia Lilliana. When you are older you will introduce yourself in a similar fashion-- but enough about protocol. If you are anything like me or your father, you will want to get straight to the juicy details. If so, you may skip ahead, dear child.
When you are ready, you may return for some more of the "boring" details.
I took care of myself. Your grandfather, King Bazyli, was fighting the fiercest war and yet still endeavored to be regarded as the kindest King. Knowing the future for your father, he commanded my parents and the majority of his warriors to live on one side of the kingdom. On the other, the King's Men fought without mercy for the enemy and without endangering the people.
My mother and father, your grandparents, refused such safety when the King had need of them. Something I desire to do all my life.
The King decided to split his kingdom in two-- a land flourishing and beautiful for years of peace and prosperity and a battlefield set aside for war alone. The King planned, instead, to send those not yet old enough to fight to the other side. Your grandparents agreed, those that were unwilling to fight, afraid, unable, or underage should be sent to such a place.
I was among that count.
My mother's tome, like the one you hold in your hands, wrote the conversation in vivid detail. Most of her writings were destroyed, and thus I write in my own tome and continue the story within the pages of her own. It may seem confusing at first, dear child, but as you age you will see how what once seemed in conflict, by the King, can still be in agreement.
King Bazyli stood before his State Advocates and posed the question to himself, "Is there any other plan than to spilt my kingdom in half?"
The room was deathly silent as the King took his slow strides toward the closed door. The shadows of the room hid his face from the members until he stopped before the arrowslit window. What little light that was in the room came from the evening sun pouring inside.
His footsteps came to a slow stop before the eldest son of the King raised his thoughts, "The people have your heart, dear King. Is it not pleasing in your sight that those who cannot or will not to fight will be saved?"
An honored daughter interjected, "King Bazyli, you will not force someone to die for you if they, themselves, are unwilling. You do not expect them to fight for you if the choice is not there."
"Yes, which is why the decision to spilt the Kingdom is both wise and troublesome. My people will not hesitate to stay and fight by my side, but others.... Though I love my people, the farther they are from me, the less it seems their love is returned to me."
"Nevertheless, a benevolent King does not force his people to love him. Though he does everything in his power to keep them," the eldest son added, knowing his father.
"Nevertheless." The honored daughter's voice echoed.
"Nevertheless." The King sighed, knowing his son spoke the truth. "Then, it is decided. My Kingdom is to live with my warriors fighting on one side, valiantly, and the young ones, foreigners and unfaithful on the other. No man is to be forced to join the war effort. Anyone unwilling to war for their King is as good as an enemy. Anyone willing to stand on the side of my son is a good as an honored child."
"Refusing to fight in this war so obviously all around-- you will count it as treason, my King? When the war is over sill they suffer the same fate as the attackers?"
"Yes. When the war is over," the King responded sadly.
"Yes. When the war is over," the son echoed, infected with his father's love for his people. Yet the truth had to be said. "The King loves peace. We are only at war because Tynan thought himself equal to the King and attempted to steal the throne as I sat regent."
Silence filled the hall only for a moment, pregnant with anger and sadness at his betrayal. The darkness of the falling sun increased as servants ran about lighting torches along the walls.
"My own people, called by my name, refuse to fight that I remain on the throne?" the King sighed in resignation, "They are not my people." Longing seemed to tinge his voice for those who knew not what choice they were making in ignoring the war all around them, but only those who were the King's children could hear it beneath the strong and sure answer given so softly in the walls of the palace.
"As normal, however, the foreigners and subjects who have accepted and sided with the King and his son, will always be regarded as honored sons and daughters," another honored daughter whispered. She was reminding herself of the King's character and the eldest son confirmed her statement with a soft hand on her shoulder.
"We will have to keep a steady pulse on this war. To allow anyone and everyone to change their mind toward their King," an honored son added, eager to bring hope back to the conversation.
"Yes, and also to end the war at the right time, lest our own warriors fall in battle and are lost to us forever," another chimed in.
"I will keep the pulse," the King interrupted before his children got too excited.
"My Lords, pardon the interruption, " another voice chimed in. Your grandmother was still nervous about her new position.
"Speak, Honored daughter and Warrior," the King welcomed his newest daughter with a smile.
"I have already pledged my fealty to you, yet my child is much too young to join in the war. Will she be safe?"
It was that day, my mother heard the most fearsome words from the kindest King, "My dear Stephanie.... No one is safe from war."