Disclaimer: I don't own anything except any part of the plot you don't recognize from the series. Otherwise, it's all Tamora Pierce's.

A Tale of Two Cousins

Queenscove:

The air was filled with the sweet smells of summer and birds flitted to and fro amongst the trees. Young fawns wandered with their mothers through the tall meadow grass. The sky was a perfect blue, clear of all clouds. It was a bright, sunny, quiet morning, the dew still wet on the ground.
"Yarghhhh!" A loud, human cry rent the air, followed by other grunts and snarls as two young boys wrestled each other down a hill, rolling over and over, hitting every rock and root on their descent.
When they reached the bottom, neither 9 year old Domitan of Masbolle or 7 year old Nealan of Queenscove was really ready to take the other on, stumbling and watching as the world went topsy turvy before their eyes.
"Everything's spinning!" cried Neal, falling to the ground in a heap. "This is all your fault!"
"It is not! You started it!" Dom growled. He tried to aim a punch at Neal's stomach, but strained his shoulder and collapsed beside his cousin.
Neal laughed, Dom being powerless to defend himself. For the rest of the morning, they gazed up at the clouds, hoping no one would call them back for lessons.

And so begins a Tale of Two Cousins........