A/N: It may take me a while, but I get there eventually. We finally have that prequel to 'Meadows of Heaven' that I was going to put up, though it is not necessary to have read MoH first, because this all takes place before hand. It only took me a year or so to get enough to start posting up. This fic basically takes us through to Squall meeting Rinoa, becoming her knight and seeing how everything went downhill. It'll start off more as snippets of Squall's life, then becoming more detailed later on.

Just a quick disclaimer to say that I own none of the characters, who all belong to Disney & Square Enix and, for the most part, the chapter (and fic) titles are 'Nightwish' songs- because I fail at naming things.

Prologue-Over the Hills and Far Away

Ansem the Wise, respected Lord of Radiant Garden, highly regarded scholar and research of the universe, stared in utter confusion at the baby being dangled in front of him. Well, dangle may have been unfair to his dear, enthusiastic, minister of internal affairs- it wasn't as if the other man held the baby by one foot. He was perfectly sure that the infant was entirely safe and secure, held under its armpits by two hands that seemed huge in comparison to the tiny life form. Still, he felt dangle was the appropriate word in this circumstance.

"Isn't he beautiful?" the minister exclaimed, grinning broadly at his lord and 'master', apparently unaware of the confusion he was causing.

Ansem looked into the baby's face, who looked almost as confused as he felt, or maybe he was just projecting his feelings onto the baby's expression. He wasn't entirely sure why Laguna had burst into his office, baby in his hands, but he was sure there was a very good reason. Despite popular belief, the other man rarely did things without reason, with the exception of talking that is.

Luckily, it appeared as if Laguna did not require an answer.

"We've named him Squall."

Realisation struck like lightening and Ansem's expression changed into a broad smile. Of course, Laguna's wife, Raine, had given birth recently. No doubt Laguna was making his rounds and showing off his new born to anyone who would stand still long enough.

"He is a beautiful boy indeed," Ansem agreed, humouring the man.

There was a hasty knock at the door and Ansem turned his attention away from the baby.

"Come in."

The door swung open and a woman stepped into the room, closing the door behind her. She gave the Lord a small bow before turning to Laguna. It seemed as though fair Mrs Leonhart had finally caught up with her husband. Her expression was exasperated, but the twinkle in her eyes and the slight upturn of her mouth gave her away. Ansem gave her a nod of acknowledgement as Laguna continued rattling on.

Raine crossed her arms, taking several steps towards her husband until she stood just behind him.

"Laguna Leonhart." The man froze into place, child still in his hands. "Our child is not a toy to take in for 'show and tell'."

She stepped forward and took the baby from her husband's grasp. She turned back to Ansem, ignoring Laguna's soundless objection.

"I am sorry My Lord, my husband's a little over excited."

Laguna spluttered and Ansem chuckled. "No need to apologize Raine, it was a pleasure to meet the newest member of your family. It is a very reasonable thing for your husband to get excited over. Oh, speaking of children, Sorceress Edea wishes to speak with you. I believe she wishes to know how your and Ifalna's work on the orphanage is coming along."

"Thank you and I'll see her now. I'm sorry to disturb you, we'll be leaving now." She gave her husband a meaningful look. "All of us."

Turning she carried her child from the room and, with a quick shrug, her husband followed.

"Laguna." The man in question turned back to him. "I'm expecting some reports from you by this evening, don't forget that."

"Of course not, My Lord," Laguna replied, giving him a theatrical bow as he did so. "Your wish is my command," and he disappeared from the room, leaving Ansem smiling to himself.

End of Prologue

A short chapter start us off there. I hope you enjoyed and will stick around for the rest of it. I'll hopefully be able to get this updated at a steady pace (considering I pretty much have the first ten chapters already written. Thank to my brother, Just Bob, who is and will be beating this.

Next chapter- Squall takes a trip to the orphanage and we see Irvine's dark beginings.