|The littlest warrior
Author: LightsObsession PM
The cousin of Dillios has always been a wild child, the sea crashing against the rocks. But now she has a desire. When the Spartans attack the persians a second time, she will be there. Crashing against their forces with all the stregth she as.Rated: Fiction T - English - Drama/Adventure - Words: 3,437 - Reviews: 6 - Follows: 6 - Published: 01-08-08 - id: 4000268
|A+ A- Full 3/4 1/2 Expand Tighten|
-1Disclaimer: I own nothing but the characters Lycoris and Callista.
This is Sparta.
The defeat of the 300 at the hot gates weighted heavily on the minds of the people that were left behind. Without Leonidas the people of Sparta were left with little hope of ever regaining the glory they once had and yet their courage, their need to fight never wavered. They believed in the army that was left behind and they believed in the inner strength of their people, a strength that descended from Hercules himself. Initially after the death of Leonidas and the brave 300 the people of Sparta, free and slave alike, mourned for his and his soilders death loosing all will to stop the powers of Xerxes that seemed to sweep the land of Greece like a plague.
The days turned into weeks, the weeks turned into months and yet the people did not know what to do. Without the leadership of Leonidas, the slayer of wolves, the people had no confidence. After all their king was the strongest amongst them, the bravest of any warrior and the most skilful when It came to battle. If he fell they would all fall. That was the opinion of most of the people of Sparta and yet there were a few like the lone survivor Dilios that believed the sacrifice was not in vain, that the Spartan people could rise together and defeat the barbaric enemy that hovered over them.
Lycoris sat on the ledge of her window in the female barracks. Her legs were throbbing with the numbing pain that often came with trying to perfect the gymnastic combat that all Spartan girls were required to learn. Lycoris didn't understand the separation between the young men and women of Sparta, if they were all to be married to one another one day wouldn't it make more sense for them all to interact? Lycoris of course had always been a tom boy, raised along 6 brothers, she didn't have a female role model until
the age of 7 when she came to live in the barracks. Before that she would tuck her robes into her undergarments to enable her to run freely with her big brothers through the many fields around Sparta. She only did it once when she arrived at the barracks and was given a severe beating for it too.
The door to Lycoris room opened and her closest friend and confidant came in. Callista's outer beauty matched her name, 'most beautiful' yet her inner beauty was what shone through when Lycoris looked at her. She was always polite and gentle the ideal of what a Spartan woman should be when she was ready for marriage. Callista however was destined for something darker and less satisfying than getting married, she was to become the next Oracle. She would go to live among the Ephores and would sate their desires for knowledge and for flesh. It was to be an honour, the Ephores after all took only the most beautiful Spartan girls, and yet like so many Callista was to be damned in her own beauty. Lycoris feared greatly for her friend knowing that she would never see her again once she climbed that mountain.
"Why does someone so beautiful have such an ugly expression upon their face?" Callista was like that, always giving compliments to someone else.
Lycoris turned on the sill and smiled at her friend, her face breaking out into a smile at Callista's beautiful blonde hair shinning in the setting sun.
"If there is anyone that should know the melancholy of my expression I think it would be you" Tilting her head to the side Lycoris let out a sad smile. Callista quickly made her way across the room, sitting down next to her friend and putting her arm around her. Callista knew exactly what was boring her friend, it had been bothering her since she heard about the encounter with the Queen in the field.
Callista pressed her head against Lycoris'. "Your cousin will be fine I'm sure, he will come to you when he has the opportunity. You understand he will be speaking with many official's and trying to explain what steps we should all take together."
"I understand that but I need to see him, he saw such things, he heard the last words of our king, he is the one that's going to lead us into battle and he knows my intentions and yet he doesn't come to me! He ignores my ambitions and he ignores the life I wish to lead for myself. I will never understand Dilios!"
Callista gave a loud laugh, wrapping her arms around Lycoris' and drawing her close to her planting a kiss upon her forehead.
"No one was meant to understand Dilios. He's a creature of certain distinction, a great story teller and because of this he has many walls and its hard to discover the fiction from the truth. But that's what makes him all the more charming" Callista sighed against Lycoris skin.
"You should have married him you understand? You were always together when we were younger and all those stories about a beautiful goddess that came to earth and enchanted every man she came across? They were all about you! I don't understand why your marriage was never discussed further. You would have had beautiful daughters and strong healthy sons" Saying this Lycoris had sat up and taken Callista's hands in her own giving her a look of pity and a look of loss that she knew her own friend could never wear upon her own face.
"Dilios took the path he was meant to take. He was destined to be a solider, it was what the Gods wanted from him. I cared for him yes but in the end we both knew that nothing could come of it. We were both made for different things, Dilios a life of honour, glory and blood, and myself a life of solitude with only diseased mystics as my only company."
Lycoris sucked in her breath when Callista spoke of her coming life, she hated it when they spoke of those moments. Of the time when they would be parted forever, when they would become two different women and they would never discover the women they could be as they married and birthed children of their own.
"From the day I was born my mother and father knew of my fate. They gave me my name to reflect such a thing, to let everyone know that their child was the special one, the one fated for greatness. When I met your cousin I knew my destiny and by looking at me he knew it too but we both believed that for that time we could be happy. That was a children's life, he has moved onto the life of a man and now I must leave here and go onto the life of a woman. I have no regrets in my life Lycoris and I will never regret knowing Dilios better than anyone else" Callista finished with a sad smile that she quickly turned to the setting sun.
Lycoris stared at the beautiful picture she made, feeling more than grateful that her life with her brothers had made her stronger than the average woman in physical appearance and grateful that her parents did not bestow upon her the same beauty they did to her brother. For in this world of Sparta beauty truly was a curse.
Hours later the sun had set and the light of the moon was the only source of light. No movement came from the city, everyone was sleeping or doing things they knew required them to keep the serenity of the night. The natural sounds of the world was the only thing penetrating the silence, all the women in the female barracks were asleep as all brides in training should be, all but one.
Lycoris ran through the corridors of the barracks, stopping at each corner to peak around to avoid being discovered. She knew that If she was found out a beating would be the least of her worries, she might loose her chance of a husband. It was well known that although the girls were sent here to train and become true Spartan women their real goal was to train to become good wives for strong husbands. When she first came here Lycoris received strike after strike against her name and this one could be the last one needed to throw her out. But being typical Lycoris, she didn't care. Being a warrior woman was far more important being a wife.
She passed the plaques that signified the greatest warrior wives to graduate from the Barracks, Lycoris' mother was right there at the top. Her mother had excelled in all her classes and became the fastest, smartest and strongest amongst her rivals, eventually marrying the greatest solider in the male barracks, Lycoris' father. Everyone expected Lycoris is be even greater than her mother, being the child of two of the greatest graduates of the schools. Everyone was sadly disappointed.
Finally she reached the large window in the eating room. It was the only window besides the ones near the front doors that were large enough for someone to fit through. There had been many times where girls had begun to have secret affairs with soldiers, some even becoming pregnant and having to be married off quickly with less than half the skills they required. Looking from side to side Lycoris made a mad dash across the room skidding to a stop under the window and sitting beneath it. Her breathing shallowed and she kept as still as she could, listening for any movement from any other part of the room or outside It. Nothing. Slowly, much more slowly that she needed to do, Lycoris reached up a hand to undo the wooden latch of the window, prying it open with her nails, stopping only when the old wooden window gave a small squeak. Shifting herself up she placed her hands on the ledge and leaned her upper body out, looking into the street to see if anyone was coming for either direction, again nothing. Breathing in a single breath Lycoris swiftly lifted her body onto the ledge and jumped from it, landing and quickly running before she even had a chance to fully regain her balance. If her cousin wouldn't come to her, then she would go to him.
Dilios stalked his room from side to side. Why was it so hard ,even after all that had happened, to gain the support he needed? Didn't they realise that they were on the brink of the greatest war that had ever been seen in their time? Of course he now had the support of the council after his tale of his king and his brothers but it was the Ephores that he was still having trouble with. They still refused to allow them to go to war, believing that their prediction to Leonida's had been right and his death simply proved their word was better than any. There had to be something that he hadn't tried, something he hadn't said, anything!
Sitting down onto his soft bed in his spacious room that was often so lonely for him, Dillios rubbed his face in his hands letting out a deep sigh. He was so tired, all he wanted to do was sleep. It seemed the Gods were truly against him, maybe it was punishment for abandoning his family to their deaths rather than staying and dying along side them? Giving up Dillios threw himself backwards onto his back and closed his eyes, relaxing his whole body. Slumber seemed to sweep over him gently, lulling him into comfort he hadn't known for along time. And he was undisturbed. That is until he heard the sound of his name being hissed as if from the mouth of a snake. Thinking It was nothing but his mind Dillios ignored the sound and allowed his mind to become restful once again and it wasn't until he was very harshly kicked in the right leg that he
sat up quicker than lightning, pulling a small dagger from his belt to find found Lycoris standing over him. Her expression screamed annoyance.
'Well, well, well, dearest cousin. While I sit worried and agitated over your dismissal of me you simply sit here sleeping as though you have not a care in the world!' Lycoris folded her arms and looked away to the corner of the room. Dillios didn't know what to say, here was his little cousin, who he knew would be very very angry at him, looking like she was ready to tear him to bits. And he couldn't say he didn't deserve it, he had been avoiding her like she carried the plague and for good reason too, Lycoris was dangerous when left waiting. Clearing his throat Dillios prepared to explain the unexplainable.
'I understand you may be feeling anger towards me right now, righteous anger it maybe be, it is still unwarranted. What I do I do out of interest for you my rare one. You know that it wasn't my intention to cause such feelings within you but you have to understand my duty is to my people before it is to my own desires' Dillios looked up into Lycoris disbelieving eyes.
'Ah don't try and force feed me your lies Dillios! I know you have been avoiding me, what I don't understand is why? Am I so unimportant to you that you would forget me as quickly as you draw breath?' A hurt look passed over Lycoris face causing Dillios defences to her crumble. He never could stand to see that look flash across her pretty features. Taking her limp hand in his he gently pulled her till she collapsed to sit next to him on the bed. Her bottom lip sticking out slightly making an adorable picture.
Dillios began to speak, all the while a cheeky smile upon his tanned face. 'Now now rare one you know no other could hold my heart in the way that you do. No woman, nay not even a Goddess could take my heart from you and make it theirs. Little Cori you are my only'
Rolling her eyes at him Lycoris couldn't help but be enchanted by her cousin. He knew how to make a person feel like they were the only ones in the world and he soothed her anger at him quicker than the water could put out the fire. At this moment, when he was being his most charming, Lycoris knew she could forgive him anything, even calling her that stupid childhood nickname he knew she hated. Sighing she released his hand from her own, knowing that if she wanted to get what she came for, she would need to strengthen herself against him. Lycoris stood from the bed, and Dillios made to protest when she got onto the bed and sat facing him cross legged, looking right in the eyes. Taking a deep breath she began to speak:
'Dillios you know why I came here. You know what I want and yet you don't make any attempt to help me or even speak with me about it. Do you believe that by ignoring my desire to go to war it will simply fizzle out like some childish fantasy? Well it won't believe me, the Gods gave me this desire and I'm not going to squander it by sitting around hoping it would go away! You must let me go with you when you leave again. If you don't then I will simply have to find a means of getting to the battle myself and would you really be able to live with seeing your only surviving cousin forced to give favours to common men for passage to the a battle? Because if it comes to that you know ill do it Dillios'
Dillio's know very well that when his cousin wanted something she always got it and if it was something she wanted with conviction she would use any means to obtain it. Just the thought of her giving what should only be given to her husband to many unnamed men made him feel sick. No one from his family name should undergo so a thing. He sighed in defeat knowing that this was the second battle he had lost, the first being running away from the hot gates. Lycoris' eyes lit up with that certain kind of sparkle and she knew she had won, she would be going with them, thank the gods! She was so excited at the prospect that she threw her arms around Dillio's neck and squeezed with all her might, chocking the air from his lungs.
Dillio's pulled her arms from around his neck and looked her straight in the eyes, letting her know how serious he was about what he was about to say.
'Cori, I need you to listen to me because I wont be repeating myself do you hear?' a pointed look from him got her simply nodding her head.
'You can come with us when we leave but you have to stay with me, now this means you will be at the front regiment of the army. If we are attacked this means you will be in the most venerable place and you could easy get hurt. Now I know that you are capable of taking care of yourself but its my duty to remind of all this. Also you know as well as I that a woman wouldn't be permitted anywhere near the army, especially one going directly into battle. This means you will have to be disguised, by doing this you will draw a lot of attention to yourself because you cannot wear the traditional dress of a Spartan solider, you will have to wear armour to cover your…woman assets. And whatever you do, do NOT take off your helmet in their presence, one look at your delicate face and there is no way they would believe a tiny creature like you was a man. Do you understand everything I've told you?'
'Of course I do! I'm not simple Dill, I do understand the need for caution too' Lycoris folded her arms. Rubbing his large rough hands down Lycoris arm he tried to sooth her raging temper. She was always so feisty it made him smile without fail.
'I know little one but you are one of the only family members I have left besides my son and when your mother finally passed, Gods bless her soul, she made me promise I would continue to look after you as I have all our lives.' A tender look passed in his expressive eyes and Lycoris leaned into his embrace.
Closing her eyes she understood all that her dearest cousin was doing for her and that he really only had her best interests at heart, he really was one of the only people in the world who gave selflessly to her.
'I understand you loved mama very much, she was a strong woman and I understand your promise to her but you must understand I have my own destiny, my own star to follow. The Gods have given me this drive to fight and I don't want to waste it. The only thing I have to ask you now is when I have to prepare for this great adventure set before me? Tomorrow? The day after?'
Dillios grimaced and gave her an almost sheepish look 'Ah now about that'
Authors note: Well that's the first chapter? I m not to sure If I just..waffled on about nothing or if I was using this chapter as character development? I think it's the latter because I hate it when stories just throw a character out there and don't allow the reader to know them And after all a good write knows all their characters motivations, their likes and dislikes, the things that inspire them, who they are inside and out ect ect ect. So I hoped you like the chapter, any opinions on what I could do better would be welcomed and I hope to see you again next time!