20 years ago

The demon army of the Shadow Lord had evaporated into thin air in what seemed to be less than a second after an eight year old Kabalis witnessed the knight in blinding white armor strike down the dark crystal. The white knight drove his glowing sword deep into the heart of the crystal which was floating in the quadrangle of Jeuno's Ru'Lude Gardens. Kabalis had no idea how or why it was there, only that he had to protect his younger brother, Bledri who was just three years old.

The blinding dark energy shockwave sent the two young brothers flying back far enough to leave them stunned. While kabalis lay on the ground, he could see the darkness that affected the world around him slowly begin to lift. He sat up and looked around for his brother and found him looking just as stunned as he was, but noticed that he was alright.

Kabalis stood up and noticed the white knight lying on the stairs leading up to the skyway overlooking the embassy of Windurst. His armor was scorched black and covered in blood. His golden shield was broken. And his glowing sword was beginning to lose its penetrating glow. Kabalis slowly started to walk toward the fallen knight. Not sure of what to do when he got there. All he knew was that he and his little brother were just saved when the knight sacrificed himself without hesitation.

Kabalis kneeled beside the knight and took a look at his wounds forcing a single tear to roll down his cheek. Too see someone in so much pain caused feelings of sadness to overtake him. Kabalis noticed in the corner of his eye, a Hume Samurai slowly walk toward them from the direction of the grand duke palace. He had a look of despair and disbelief on his face as he slowly removed his helmet and dropped it on the ground. His armor was black with a shimmering gold trim. It was scuffed and damaged; a clear sign that the samurai had been fighting in the day's battle.

The unknown warrior looked down at the fallen knight and dropped to his knees. He looked over at Kabalis and gave him a look of recognition before turning back toward the wounded knight. Kabalis had no idea why the warrior recognized him.

"Don't try to move." The samurai said before giving off a fake smile. "Always the hero; you should've waited for me. I could've helped you." He said again as his fake smile disappeared from his face as he tried to fight off the tears.

"I... couldn't... let you have all the fun." The knight said. "I... did what... I... had to. I'm... sorry. Stay... true... for me. I love you... brother. May your blade... always be swift." He said again with a bloody smile as he reached for his sword which now had lost all its shine and energy. The blade had become as dull as rust on a forgotten tool. The samurai helped the dying knight grasp the sword. He then took it and pressed it into the arms of the young boy. Kabalis could feel the weight of the sword overtake him, but held a firm grip on it none the less.

"For me?" Kabalis shyly asked.

"Yes... My honors... my dreams... as a paladin... are now yours. Swear... as I've sworn... to defend the weak... and helpless..." He replied.

"I don't know if I'm strong enough." The boy stated.

"Heh... You'll do just... fine." The paladin said with a sure smile. To Kabalis, he looked like he knew something the boy didn't.

"A Paladin..." Kabalis said with a smile as he held up the sword with all his strength.

As the boy held the sword in the air, he heard the faint sound of a deep exhale coming from the ground in front of him. He took his eyes off the sword and glanced at the paladin to find he had shut his eyes and stopped moving. To Kabalis, he looked like his pain and suffering was now over and that his time had finally come to rest from a life of endless battles.

He looked over at the Samurai who now had his head buried in the chest of his now dead brother and began to silently weep. Kabalis felt a great sadness for his loss and looked over his shoulder at his three year old brother Bledri who had just approached them.

"Is he sleeping Kab?" The child asked.

"Yeah..." Kabalis replied as he wrapped his arms around his brother. "He's sleeping."