Disclaimer I do not own anything from Princess Mononoke. In fact, I do not own anything...

From the Eyes of a Princess

Chapter One The Curse of Hope

I am the last of the royal bloodline of the Amishi tribe, and yet all I seem to be worth is a breeding tool. The Wise Woman is the only one who seems to care about my thoughts. I understand that it is my burden to bear sons, but I do not want to be a wife for the rest of my days.

Since the day my brother received the demon wound because of me everything has changed. The only thought that keeps me going is the hope I may see my brother again someday. But that is only stupid hope! I know this. And yet I still hope.

I may be the last princess of the Amishi, but I am me. I am a warrior, I am a girl that has been cursed by hope.

It has been four years since I last saw Ashitaka riding away on Yakule's back. It broke my heart to see him go, but it hurt even more that I had to stay. Now I am sixteen, and no longer a little girl. I know my future doesn't involve me staying here.

I am sitting under the stars, thinking about my possible paths, but I know that I must follow my heart west. Maybe I will find Ashitaka there, or maybe I will die, but either way I am ready to face my fate now.

"Princess Keiya!" came the perky voice of one of my best friends. I turned my dark brown eyes to her approach. She came slipping down the hillside to my perch.

"Hello, Junto." I spoke in my ever-serious tone. She was giggling, but I didn't see anything funny about falling on your backside. I closed my eyes to her and turned back to the moon. She finally reach my side, but I paid her no mind. I had asked her to join me for one reason: I was leaving and wanted someone to know.

"Now what was so important, Keiya? You seemed very anxious to get me down here." Junto commented, a constant smile on her face. I didn't bother to answer her at first, watching the small river reflect the moon. It's image was distorted by constant flow of the cool water.

"Junto... look at the river and tell me what you see." I told her. She seemed confused and a little annoyed at my request. She turned and looked at the river, but her lips were twisted into a thin line.

"A bunch of water? What else is there?" Junto asked me. I smiled sadly, having expected that answer.

"But, my friend, I see differently. I see hope reflected by change. I see my future rushing past me." I explained, Junto was confused, I could easily tell, but I knew what I had to do. "You see, Junto, I am leaving and our laws are very clear about this." Junto looked at me, shocked.

"But Keiya you can't!" she started, but I held up my hand to silence her. I smiled warmly.

"This is the first time I've been happy about something since Ashitaka left. I know what I'm doing is right." I told her. I slipped from my seat on the boulder to stand next to her. "Please believe in me." Junto looked sadly at me and I saw a tear slip down her face. I hugged her goodbye before turning to go.

She stood silently as I ran across the shallow river and into the forest. I didn't look back, because I knew that if I did I would start to doubt. I couldn't doubt myself, because my confidence was all I had.

Across my back I wore my bow, and at my side I wore a wide, long knife. These were my only protection against whatever I may find in the West. Though I wore a kimono that seemed to suggest I was a weak female incapable of defending myself, I was well trained.

I ran all night. I was full of an energy I didn't know I had. I finally decided to rest just before dawn. I sat next to a large tree, watching the sun rise. I was far from home, farther than I'd ever ventured before.

Just before I dozed I would have sworn I felt a swell of power like I used to when I wore my crystal dagger. It was magical, of that I was always certain. I hoped that the person it was protecting was Ashitaka and not someone who had looted his corpse.

"You're still alive, Ashitaka! I intend to find you!" I yelled to the world, standing and thrusting my fist into the air.

I only hoped I was right.

Just the first chapter, that's why it's short. You can understand that, right? Review please, or I won't write anymore!