Disclaimer: I do not own Fire Emblem.
A/N: This is a fic that I've had in mind for a while now, and just started writing it. This first chapter might not make a ton of sense, especially when the girl is thinking. Trust me though, it will make sense eventually. Also, I realize that it will not be perfect and will need some correcting. If you notice anything, please tell me.
She woke, wondering what had awakened her from the sleep that she had hoped would never end. A voice? She stood, her legs weak from her days of no food. A wave of dizziness hit her for a moment. When that passed, she listened.
"...And what makes him think that I wanted to come here in the first place!" demanded a young voice loudly. She walked around a curve on the shore, the waves lapping at her feet. A minute later she found the source of the voice. A boy, not older eleven, paced on the beach, his face contorted in an emotion that she could not identify. She watched him for a moment, afraid to go near.
He muttered something under his breath, and ran a hand through his dark sapphire hair. Then he kicked at the sand angrily. She winced and fought the urge to run. He was just like...
"Why did they have to die?" He asked bitterly, staring at a pendant he had pulled from his pocket. She wondered what he was talking about. And why was it such a big deal to him? The...Creator she had known had always told her that she could never understand emotions...like his "ambition". She wished she did now, for the boy looked so terribly lonely. Of course, he would be just like Creator, and would most likely curse at her for being a failure, and toss her back out into the sea...She shuddered.
"Mother...Father..." The boy dashed the pendant on the ground. "What good is an object like this? It can't bring them back!" He looked up at the sky, then gazed down the beach. His eyes met nothing but sand...until he saw a girl, her clothes torn and ragged, staring at him.
When his eyes locked with hers, she ducked behind a rock, hoping he would not see her. No such luck. He was curious now, and ran to where she was.
She wondered if she could run, but knew that it was not something her body was capable of in this state.
"Who are you?" He asked gruffly. She shrank back, his tone very much like the Creator's. He was obviously surprised at her reaction and softened a little bit.
"Well, who are you? What's your name?"
She looked at the ground and whispered, "I...I don't have a name." It was the truth. Creator had told her that she was not worthy of a name.
He raised an eyebrow. "Right. Liar."
"I...I am not!" She defended. Such behavior around the Creator would have gotten her
hit, but something about this boy made her refuse to lie down and take the insult.
"Sure. Whatever," The boy seemed to lose interest.
"Why...why are you so sad?" She asked, hoping she had put the right name to the emotion she would never feel. He looked at her, the hurt in his eyes apparent. Once again she ached to do something about it. He seemed so alone...
"I'm not sad!" He glared at her, and she backed away fearfully. His eyes were so powerfully blue...He averted his strong glare and looked out at the ocean, dropping his guise. His eyes once again betrayed his true emotions.
She was almost about to ask his name, when a voice called from the distance.
"Brother! Where are you?"
The boy looked at her and said curtly, "I have to go." And that was all. He ran off, towards the voice. She felt a strange longing to have a voice call her home like that.
The boy had disappeared from her view when she noticed that the pendant he had thrown into the sand lay there forgotten. She picked it up. The boy would want this back...
She found new energy and ran in the direction he had disappeared.
Now she was in the town, where she had seen the carriage that she thought held the boy had come. She came upon a very tall building, with guards at the entrance. They ignored her presence. She went around the back, where a tall fence encircled an extravagant but small courtyard. She climbed to the top and looked in.
There was the boy, and a young man, with nearly the same color hair and eyes, talking.
"How could I have lost it!" The boy asked loudly, his eyes wild.
She watched them, watched the young man, who must have been the boy's brother, console him, saying that he would send a servant to go look for it. Finally, when her arms and legs began to cramp from hanging on the fence for so long, the man left, leaving the distraught boy.
She jumped down, startling him.
"What are you doing here, liar!" The boy demanded harshly. His words hurt her, but she walked up to him, and handed him the little pendant. His eyes lit up, and he snatched it out of her hands.
"Where...where did you get this?" He held the object tenderly.
"You left it on the beach..." She mumbled meekly. He looked at her clothes, her thin body, which made her terribly self-conscious in the middle of all of this wealth.
"What is your name? I know you have one!" He questioned. She looked down, out of embarrassment. "I don't have one."
"Really?" The boy seemed to be genuinely concerned, as if her having a name was the most important thing to him in the world at the moment. She nodded.
"Well then, I'll give you a name!" He proclaimed. "If that is all right." She blushed and muttered, "I'm not worthy of a name..."
"Of course you are! You followed me all the way here just to give me this! You have to have a name!"
"...But..." She protested weakly. How she suddenly longed to have a name.
"What about..." He cut her slight protest off, "Umvalise?"
She looked up at him in surprise. He smiled at her; her green eyes were so big and bright with such a gift. It made him wonder what she had ever gone through, to convince herself that she did not deserve a name.
"I-I am not worthy..." She whispered meekly. He laughed and asked, "Do you know what 'Umvalise' means?"
She shook her head, sure that it would be something horrible.
"It means 'Sky Sapphire'." He grinned at her, waiting for the girl's reaction.
"Umvalise?" She tried the name out on her tongue, and then asked, "What is a sapphire?"
His jaw dropped. "You don't know what a sapphire is?"
His eyes took that gentle look that she was beginning to treasure. He gave her the pendant, which was a crest of gold, in the middle of which, was a large blue stone.
He pointed to the stone and explained, "That's a sapphire."
"It's so...beautiful..." She gazed at it, entranced.
"It is," He continued, "also worth a lot of money. It has much worth." She still looked at the sapphire, so that he could not see her eyes. He wondered what she was thinking, when he saw a drop of water splash onto the pendant, and then another. She was crying?
Umvalise handed him the pendant and looked away, so that he would not see her crying. She herself did not know what was happening to her. Her body felt so...different. Was this an emotion? Umvalise wondered if she had ever cried before. She did not think so. But this boy...he was special. Though she did not know consciously that he had given her the most precious gift ever, her heart knew full well.
"Hey, don't cry!" He exclaimed. "What is there to cry about?" He was surprised that for a moment, he had not been thinking about the death of his parents.
"Everything," She choked out. A moment later she seemed to regain control of herself. Umvalise took a breath and asked, "What is your name?"
"Does it mean anything?" She inquired. "Because it must mean something heavenly, if mine means something so important."
He grinned at her and remarked, "It doesn't mean a thing!"
"Really? Liar," She said. He started laughing, and she did not know why.
"Hector?" asked a voice from inside the building.
Hector looked at her and whispered, "Oh no. My brother, Uther. You should go home. But come back again, okay?"
She gazed at the ground, a motion that Hector was learning meant she was ashamed of something.
"I don't have a home," Umvalise murmured quietly.
"My brother would never let you stay here..." Hector said thoughtfully. "If he found out. Umvalise, hide behind those bushes for a second. I'll bring you some food in a little bit." Without waiting for her to answer, he ran into the building, calling, "I'm coming Uther!"
Uther stared at his little brother, who was shoveling food in his face. Hector had not eaten like this since...since their parents had died. Uther clenched his fist under the table. Their death had hurt him greatly too...but he couldn't show it. Lycia, Ostia, and Hector all depended on him not to show it. Uther ate calmly, forcing one tasteless mouthful down after another. Hector had taken their deaths badly...but what had happened to him? Now his eyes were bright and he even had a smile of sorts on. Maybe it was the beach. Uther had taken leave of the court of Lycia for a while, to help Hector and himself recover. This small resort on the Badon shore had been a favorite place for their parents to get away for a couple days.
He was completely baffled. Hector had been downcast and curt only an hour ago, when he found that he had lost the crest of Ostia that had always hung around their father's neck. The marquess of Ostia had worn that pendant ever since Ostia had been founded, but Uther had given it to Hector, if only as a reminder of their parents.
"Bye, honored brother!" Hector left the table with such a lack of manners that he could have been raised as a peasant. Uther smiled slightly, and realized that he hadn't smiled in so long. What had happened to his brother?
Uther followed quietly on the heels of his younger brother, all the way to the courtyard. He peered out the window, and nearly gasped in surprise. Hector had carried some food out...for a little girl?
From the look of her, she was nothing but a child off of the streets. Her body was lean, her clothes were torn. Her umber hair was short around her face, but her large green eyes were bright with intelligence. Uther listened to their conversation.
"Umvalise! I brought you some food, it's not a lot but..." Hector admitted. Uther raised an eyebrow. Umvalise? Sky Sapphire? Was she the daughter of some gypsy or something?
Umvalise stared at the food. She had not seen so much food for so long. She tentatively took a piece of bread and bit a little off.
"I-I should not eat this, Hector. I don't deserve it. First you give me this beautiful name, and now this.." Umvalise hung her head.
Uther wondered what she meant. Hector had given her that name? What? He was totally confused now. When had the two met? And did this girl-this Umvalise-not know who she was speaking to? She did not bow or say 'lord'. Not that that was bad for a boy as young as Hector...but still.
He watched the two talk happily, and figured out that she had met him at the beach and she had given him his pendant back. That startled him. She had given him the crest of Ostia back? That crest was made of solid gold, with a ridiculously large sapphire in it. Didn't she know that if she sold that, it would make her rich? There was something different about this girl. She was so innocent...but she seemed to be very mature, if not incredibly humble.
Uther decided he would have to talk to Hector about her.
"Uther, you can't throw her out, she doesn't have a home, but she deserves one, and I know she is probably the kid of a whore or something, but you have to let her stay! I don't know where she got the idea of how worthless she is, but she is really quite intelligent, and-" Hector rattled off desperately. When Uther had come up to him and asked about her, Hector thought that she didn't have a chance.
Uther was rather amused. Hector was so animated, and back to his stubborn self. But where had he learned a word like whore? Uther sighed. He was growing up. Uther wondered what other words he knew...
"This Umvalise..." Uther cut his brother off. "I heard something about you giving her a name?" Hector looked startled for a moment.
"Yeah, she said she didn't have a name, so..."
"Sky Sapphire?" Uther asked. Hector turned sheepish, "Well, I had to name her something that showed she was worth something." Uther nodded seriously. His little brother was growing up. He could almost say that the young Hector was experiencing his first crush.
"May I talk to this Umvalise?" Uther asked. He wanted to know that she would not hurt his brother. Hector had been through too much as it was. Hector's nod was barely perceptible. He left to get Umvalise.
Uther lay on his bed and stared up at the ceiling. It had turned out that Umvalise was indeed worthy of the name "Sky Sapphire". He was impressed. That child was, in his opinion, as close to perfect as a human could ever come. She was so convinced that she was worthless that her brilliance shone like the full moon on a black night. Or like a sapphire in the sky. Hector had chosen her name well.
Umvalise was going to be staying with them, and receiving the best classes possible for her talent. Uther had, on a whim, brought out a game of chess for her. Chess was one of his hobbies, and he believed that he was a fairly decent player. He taught Umvalise how to play, and only had to explain the rules once. The first game he had won, but barely. The second game she had beaten him so fast that he spent a while after she had left studying the ingenious moves she had used to capture his unsuspecting king.
This girl had an astonishing intellect, and could very well turn out to be an outstanding tactician or strategist. Uther had elected not to tell Umvalise who they were. She did not need to know that. She was helping Hector, in a way that Uther saw as strategic as the way she had beaten him at chess. Hector needed someone who needed him, instead of him always needing someone. And Umvalise was perfect. Uther silently thanked all of the gods above who had given him this girl.
Umvalise had lived in their resort home for only a week, before she woke one morning and knew that she had to leave. She could feel the essence of Creator coming closer, and feared that he was after Hector and Uther. So she did what she had to. Umvalise left before the sun rose, taking with her only the clothes she wore, and the most precious gift anyone had ever given her. She left behind nothing for Hector, only her memory.
A/N: Okay. This is not necessarily the final draft. I might rewrite it later, but I had to put it out here so that I could see what people thought about it. And the Umvalise "Sky-Sapphire" thing I totally made up. There is no deep root for the word or anything. Review please!