Very Short Summary because I'm too lazy to actually write the whole one: A messenger comes to Iron Town, seeking Ashitaka's help. His sister Kaya is dying and as her last request she wishes to see her brother again.

AN: I don't know how old Kaya really is so I'm going to say she's fourteen, so don't complain please.


The wise woman sat next to a low bed, her eyes downcast and her head bowed. A fourteen year-old girl lay on the bed, her breath shallow and eyes closed. Suddenly, to the wise woman's surprise, her eyes shot open, revealing cloudy brown eyes. "Ashitaka!" she gasped, her mouth opening a tiny slit. "Bring Ashitaka to me!"

The wise woman opened her eyes wide, "But, but, no one knows where he is Princess Kaya." Then she bowed her head once more. "As you wish milady."
Kaya gave a contented sigh and relaxed again, sinking into a deep slumber.

The wise woman got up from her sitting position and walked quietly to the door, lifting up the flap that led outside. Walking into the village square she tapped gently on a young man's shoulder. "Kazuki," she said in a croaking voice. "I have an important talk for you. You must go find Ashitaka and bring him back to us. It's Princess Kaya's last wish."

The young man's eyes opened wide in surprise. "Why me? You could ask any of the older wise men to go. Chie-san, you should choose someone else."

The wise woman looked sternly at him. "You were Ashitaka's best friend and cousin and you are most likely to be able to convince him to return. "No go!" Turning around she headed back to the medicine den, where Kaya was currently kept.

"Yes Chie-san," Kazuki said respectfully. Going to his hut where he lived alone, he gathered his few possessions and went to the stables to saddle up his female red elk, Tsuki, meaning "moon" because of the crescent shaped mark on her forehead.

An hour later he left his home of 18 years (AN: both he and Ashitaka are 18) to find his best friend who a year ago had walked under this very arch never expecting to return.

Chapter 1:

A lone figure on top of the hill was silhouetted in the dawn light, looking down on the slumbering Iron Town. Though the man didn't know it, the village had changed much, starting as a dirty crowded town that revolved around industry, and changing into a quiet village with one main factory in the middle surrounded by spread out houses, each with its own private garden. There also were 4 main gates and 1 plaza where the villagers went to get their rations of rice and other goods. The mounted figure started to pick his way down the steep hill, his red elk jumping from rock to rock.

The guard at the top of the gate looked down nervously at the dark figure beneath him, standing silently at the gate. Turning to his companion, he whispered, "Is it Ashitaka? It sure looks like him." That was true, the figure looked exactly as Ashitaka had looked when he had first come to Iron Town, carrying the two injured men. The same straw cloak and hat, along with the weird hide leggings. A short sword hung by his side in a small scabbard and a bow with quiver full of arrows was slung on his back.

"No." she replied. "It can't be. I don't remember him leaving yesterday and that red elk is definitely not Yakul. It's much to small and it has a different shape on it's forehead."

"How can you see that?" he said, amazed that she could see these small details in the near darkness.

The woman rolled her eyes and shifted her gun in her hands. "Stupid men," she muttered. "They're so blind. And idiots."

"Hey!" the man explained. The two bickered for a few moments but a small cough brought their attention back to the still figure underneath them.

Leaning forward, the woman shouted at the person. "Who goes there and what do you want!"

The man (as they soon discovered he was) said, "I wish to speak with your leader, Lady Eboshi (AN: he heard about her during his travels ok….) and Prince Ashitaka if he's here."

"Prince?" the two guards exchanged looks, eyebrows raised. "Ok stranger you can only enter when the sun rises…"

"It's out town policy," the woman said apologetically, receiving a glare from the man for interrupting him, "so you must wait outside for a couple hours. Also leave your weapons where you are and we will later collect them."

"That's fair," he replied. Placing his bow and sword on the ground he sat on his red elk, waiting.

Four hours later the two guards called the man, "Ok stranger, you may enter now. Go see Gonza, our captain of the guard, and ask him to take you to Lady Eboshi." Giving the signal, men below them inside Iron Town, turned great wheels, which opened the gate.

The mounted man raised his hand in a salute and gently nudging his elk with his toes he walked through the gate and into the town beyond. Immediately people turned towards him muttering to their neighbors' shrewd comments.

A big man pushed himself through the crowd, his moustache quivering gently and a large sword clenched in his fist. "Halt stranger. What do you want?"

The man, suspecting that this was Gonza said, "The guards at the gate told me to go to you to ask where Lady Eboshi." The look in Gonza's eyes confirmed his suspicions, and growling dangerously, he took the elks reins and started to lead them to a large building in the center of the square.

"In here," he said gruffly.

The man paused before the door and shrugged off his straw cloak, slipped his leggings off, and took of his straw hat, revealing a young clear face and tousled brown hair.

The curious bystanders gasped. The young man looked uncannily like Ashitaka, with the same high cheekbones and brown eyes. Also, his clothes were the same as Ashitaka's, just different shades of green instead of blue. The only difference was his hair, which was swept into a high bun.

The teen walked into the building, stopping as the inhabitants turned to face him. One was Prince Ashitaka, the other was an older woman wearing a red loose shirt decorated with fans, dark blue pants, and a long blue overcoat, and lastly a girl their age with three red marks on her face large earrings, and a necklace that seemed to be made of claws. She was beautiful, but in a way that was different from most girls. She had a type of wild beauty, unmarred by makeup and fancy clothes. "Prince Ashitaka," (AN: Many people in the village still view him as their prince) and bowed his head.

The girl widened her eyes in surprise and the woman, who was most likely Lady Eboshi, raised her eyebrow and looked through the corner of her eye at Ashitaka.

Ashitaka stepped forward and starred into the young man's eyes. "Kazuki," he said questionably, as if he couldn't believe that the guy in front of his eyes was really his best friend. "Is it really you?"

Kazuki lifted his head and grinned. "Yep," he said and gripped his friend's arms.

"I can't believe it," Ashitaka exclaimed. "What are you doing here?"

Kazuki's grin faded. "It's Kaya," he said solemnly. "She's dying."

Well I'm done for now. I'm sorry if it's bad, I appreciate friendly criticism. Coughcoughcough my grammar SUCKS coughcoughcough :D Please R&R!