• Bright flashes filled the large, circular room as men and women flew about in whirls and twirls. The dark floor, a polished oak wood, was hollowed from much use. As I looked on, the King of these people, I wondered at their great speed and skill.

    But if we were to beat the alien race that had so opposed us for so long, then we would need more than speed and skill. We would need their cunning, their strategy, and their wit. I shook my head sadly. It looked as though this war would not be won without great loss, and my people would be enslaved by the very epitome of evil.

    We called them Snem, or "Snake Men". They had the upper bodies of of a human, and the lower bodies of snakes. Their eyes were slanted and glowed a bright, menacing red, and their tongues were forked. When one spoke to you, it was as though the very day was diminishing, and would darken forever. The Snem all had dark green scales, and their home planet was entirely marshland. They're race cohabitated far from our star, and the planet was cold as death. The Snem had declared war with us only a few months ago, but I had known for years it would come. Their Queen, the sole ruler of their people, had been dropping subtle hints of hate and treachery. Soon, we would all feel their wrath.

    "Your Highness," a soft voice spoke aloud, breaking into my thoughts. I turned to look at the speaker, and saw two young girls standing before me. Both were very young and pretty little things, though they wore worn, light armor and had their own respectable weapon. The tallest of the two had dark violet hair, like one of our nameless moons, and the other had light pink hair, like the other of our moons, a similarity that wasn't a normal occurance. To see such a strange sight before me obviously spoke of prophecies and legends, but their ages misled me.

    The older of the two, the violet haired girl, had a scimitar hooked on her back, and the smaller had a bow and a quiver of very professional looking arrows strapped to her back, along with a gilt dagger on her waist.

    As my gaze looked over them, they bowed respectively.

    "What are two little girls like you doing here with such nasty looking weapons?" I asked, raising my eyebrows.

    "We have traveled from your sister kingdom, far beyond the border," the violet-haired girl began. I could feel my guards looking on in interest. "We have trained our bodies and minds, and wish to fight for you in this war, against the Snem." She bowed again, and I hesitated.

    "Surely your parents-" I began, but the eldest shook her head. Her eyes were set, and I saw a deep flickering in the purple depths.

    "We have no family," she said sternly. "They turned us out when we refused to marry into hopeless traditions."

    "Perhaps you should return-" I began, but she shook her head again.

    "Your Highness, I know you do not believe that we can help. Please, let us prove ourselves against your strongest men," she said determinedly. The look in her eyes told me she would not take no for and answer.

    "As you wish," I said, sighing. I turned, looking to my personal guards, Remit and Terno. They were the strongest men in all of my kingdom, save for myself, and had proved themselves many times. Not only that, but they were fair, and would be able to hold back against the two small girls. "Remit, Terno," I said, raising my voice. All activity ceased in the room. "Engage these two would-be warriors in combat, and show them they are not ready for the pains of war."

    "Yes Your Majesty," Remit said, bowing. Terno nodded. Neither of them issued forth a complaint, and I heaved out a sigh, leaning against the wall and scratching at my brown beard.

    The four of them walked forward to a large, now-unoccupied mat, and turned to each other. Remit and Treno briefly exchanged looks before drawing their blades. Both were heavy blade-wielders. The violet haired girl pulled free the scimitar, and flipped it around in her hand so as to hold it in a forward grip. I smirked; she looked like she knew what she was doing, but against two heavy blades it was suicide. Evidently my guards thought the same.

    The pink haired girl, unquestionably silent, stepped back, drawing her bow and arrow. Her eyes narrowed at her sister, and without looking at her, the violet haired girl nodded her head.

    "Begin!" I roared, and Remit sped toward Violet. Just as quickly, Violet threw herself into the air, somersaulting over the drawn sword, meant only to disarm her. Surprise colored Remit's face, and Pink let fly an arrow. It struck Remit's sword down by the hilt, and, unbelievably, the sword went flying, and Remit was forced back a few feet. Undaunted, Violet sprinted toward Terno, who pushed himself into a calculated twirl, which would hit Violet squarely between the arms. I blinked, alarmed, but when one second the girl was racing toward certain death, she was suddenly twirling in the air, and the scimitar outstretched. Another sword went flying, and Terno along with it, unscratched. I could see, with interest and slight alarm, both of my guards shifting in level; they were serious now.

    Remit had grabbed his sword and was running toward the pink haired girl, who braced herself. Instead of looking afraid, she crouched, and when Remit swung, she lightly jumped onto his blade and pushed into the air, kicking him in the face and simultaneously pulling out her dagger. The bow had somehow returned to her back hook so quickly, I couldn't be sure I hadn't missedher doing it while watching her elder sister. Remit, pulling himself back together, slashed violently toward the small girl. She could only have been eight, I realized with horror, leaning up off the wall, but I still needn't have worried. Her little dagger flashed out and met his sword hit for hit- despite its massive size and her small demeanor- as she jumped back, dodging, rolling, sprinting backwards with a sure foot.

    Meanwhile, her sister was fending off Terno, who was attempting to hit her legs. Both men had extremely furious looks on their faces. When Violet leaped into the air, Terno suddenly dropped his sword and grabbed her ankle, throwing her hard to the floor. The air was thrown out of her, and her scimitar clattered away.

    "Stop!" I roared, but neither Terno nor Remit seemed to hear me, and I grew alarmed, quickly searching for something to intervene with. A sudden roar of approval from the crowd brought my attention snapping back, and I saw Pink perched on Remit's head, who was momentarily caught off guard. Her bow and arrow was again out, and with an audible twang of the bow, the arrow flew straight toward Treno. It snagged his shirt and dragged him across the room, embedding itself into the wall.

    Violet stood and kicked out with her legs as Remit reached up toward Pink, and Remit fell, Pink somersaulting through the air. Picking up her scimitar, Violet flung it up high in her hands, and Pink landed on her tip toes on the blade. Remit, whirling back to his feet and looking furious, turned on them, flinging his sword with sharp accuracy. A collective gasp filled the room, but not in fear. Violet swung the scimtar around and Pink was flung off of it, whipping out her dagger. Instead of striking it aside, she deftly slid the blade of the dagger under the blade of Remit's sword and flipped it around, grabbing the handle. Violet, sprinting beneath her as Pink flew in a straight path toward Remit on the other side of the practice mat, twirled the long weapon around so that the blunt pole end was facing him. Pink flipped around at the last second, landing squarely on Remit's face. Before he could go flying backwards, Violet struck him a mere second later in the gut, and Remit was flown at impossible speed to the wall behind him, nearly 20 feet away. He cashed into the wall and slid down it, unconscious.

    Silence filled the room as both sisters stood, panting slightly in the middle of the room. I stepped forward.

    "It appears we have our champions," I called out, grinning despite my alarm and chagrin. "I apologize, young ladies, for my guards' behavior."

    "Do not blame them," the violet haired girl said, standing straighter and looking at me with her much-too-old eyes. "We are cursed. All that we fight obtain an intense hatred for us. It is also our undoing." Unnerved by the absolute truth in her eyes, I dropped the subject. It wouldn't do to think of such things right now.

    "What are your names, child?"

    "I am Vilvalin," the violet haired girl said, standing tall, "and I am 16 years old."

    "I am Merilia," the Pink haired girl said, speaking up for the first time. Her voice was softer than her sister's. "And I am 9 years old."

    "We have no family," Vilvalin said loudly and defiantly. "And we have no future. We will fight for you, my King, and we will win this war before it can escalates. And then we will die." Briefly, I could see her eyes flicker to the still body of Remit, and sadness filled her eyes. "It is our prophecy."

    "And yet you still follow through?" I asked, incredulous. I could see the respect dawning in the eyes of all those around us. These girls were more than just children. They were sent to us by the Ancients, clearly.

    "Either that or die in captivity," Merilia scoffed. Vilvalin shot her sister a disapproving look, and Merilia quieted.

    "We will die loyal to you, Majesty," she said, bowing. Neither seemed bothered by their fate any longer.

    "If what you speak of is true," I said, after a moment, "and you both die, then you will be honored far after your time. I will see to it."

    "Your Highness!" A scream suddenly filled the room, and we all turned to look. "The Snem! They are attacking! They are here!" I cursed under my breath as the men all ran to obtain their gear, before looking to the two sisters. I blinked. They were looking at each other, fear filling the small faces. Then Vilvalin dropped her scimitar and clutched her sister, holding her tight before they pulled away. All signs of weakness was gone.

    I took a deep breath and followed my armies in readying for war.


    I looked on in joy, leaning against my servant in pain, a deep gash in my leg recently bandaged. Snem littered the battle ground, every inch filled. Very small areas were covered with the bodies of my own men. The field was filled with overjoyed, wearied soldiers, dancing in the darkening skies. Blood covered nearly all of them, save two.

    Vilvalin and Merilia stood alone and off to the side, ignoring the woots and shouts of their fellow soldiers. They alone had cleared the beginning onslaught of the army, using more speed and strength than I had ever seen. In fact, I believe it was the Power of the Ancients and their curse filling their veins that gave them such power. They flew, they destroyed.

    And now they looked fit to collapse. The soldiers were, even now, beginning to call their names, shouting above all, as our pale moons rose.

    That was when I saw it. Two shadows running against the darkened sky, toward the two small girls.

    "Vilvalin! Merilia!" I roared, but my cries were lost. Vilvalin looked up at me briefly, a small, sad smile filling her features, before Remit's sword drove through her chest, Treno's through Merilia's.

    Silence filled the field, as Remit and Treno stood, shaking, over the two girls. And then the four fell.

    The purple moon rose then, followed by the pink moon.

    "They shall forever be remembered," I whispered into the shocked silence, looking to the moons. People would say their names for millions of years to come. After all; they would rise above them every night without fail. As they had done this night.