She woke softly at the noise that dared to disturb the morning lull. It was just a crow on her bedpost, cawing very quietly now and then. She reached up to pet the bird only for it to fly away before she touched it. Slightly upset, she rose from the bed and looked around at the things in her bedroom. In front of the window sat her only toy, glistening in the sunlight. Many were the scratches on the silver parts, fierce were the scars all over the large ring. For a moment she cursed the very existence of the ring blade. Then, remembering the meeting she had that day, she picked up the weapon and flung herself out the window onto a cloud of crows.

That letter boiled back to the top of her conscious. "Meet me at the Ortheinsburg Castle Ruins." was all it said. It was written in fancy cursive on a yellow-aged piece of parchment.

The wind flowed freely through her short, choppy green hair. Tira closed her eyes, trying to meditate. Depending on what happened today, depending on who had sent her the letter, she may have to fight.

Not that fighting was something she disdained… well, in truth, the fighting hadn't always completely fulfilled her. True, for a while it was enough - it was her soul, her sustenance, her sanity. But after some time, it wasn't enough. Inside, she yearned for something more. And this hunger she couldn't identify, this growing need for something she couldn't discern, had only grown worse and worse recently.

For the past year or so, she'd been meeting with the previous owner of Soul Edge. There was something… calming, in his presence - especially with the recent death of both the Azure Knight and the cursed sword. She was free to pursue her own life, her own agenda, anything SHE wanted to do.

And frankly, she thought she might want Siegfried for her own.

A wind licked her bare stomach up to the bottom of her breasts, a chilled wind that caused her very soul to shudder. Damn it, she was thinking about him again. The blonde man would be the death of her yet.

The birds set down just at the edge of the Black Forest, where the edge of Ortheinsburg began, and dissipated like mist. Tira slowly walked towards the castle and stopped at the mote, looking around hesitantly. A raft came floating by, as it always did around this time. She deftly leapt onto it, and after making sure she wasn't going to fall off, sat down at the edge, her legs crossed and underneath her. She set the ring blade beside her and watched it glisten in the sunlight. A storm seemed to be brewing off in the distance - wouldn't take too long for it to reach this place.

As she was passing through the tunnel, she thought she saw a figure on top, staring down. It was a flashing, glistening glimpse of a figure, though. She blinked to reset her eyes, and it was gone.

As soon as the shadow of the architecture was cast over her, and the dank air surrounded her, she grew a little suspicious. Something was nearby, at any rate.

There was a growl behind her, a hollow, echoing growl, as if the noise was a cry against the gods. She looked back to see a Revenant, the plume in his hat long having degenerated and its clothes torn to hell. Even the blades it held looked as if they were dying… or already dead, anyway.

She picked up Aiselne Drossel and threw it at the monster. Revenant blocked it, causing it to return to her master just like a boomerang. She began her dancing, prancing around and distracting the monster while readying for the blow to murder it. In just a few moments they would be out of the tunnel, back in the sunlight.

Just as the light returned and passed over her body, a large blade fell from the sky and whacked through Revenant from his left shoulder down to his left hip. He screamed in fury as he split apart, revealing a young man that had jumped from the top of the structure and murdered the demon. His blond hair almost sparkled in the sunlight, trying to compete with his radiant armor. Blue-green eyes were set in his face, with a long red scar pointing down from the right eye. His lips were by no means thin, but definitely not too thick. They were just visible and ruddy enough to affirm that he was very alive, and despite what many would think, still very young and fresh.

She smiled at him and set her blade in the raft with a "thunk," leaning on it. "So you're the one who wrote that letter, huh?" she said snarkily.

Siegfried picked up his sword and stuck the point of the blade in the raft so that it stood up on its own. "Hmph. You know just how to greet someone, don't you?" His voice was deep, smooth, masculine, enough to make her brain melt like butter sliding down a hot plate.

"I'm just a little disappointed it's only you, is all," she replied snarkily, with a grin on her face.

Siegfried laughed quietly. "Okay then, I'll just leave," he said as he walked towards the edge of the raft like he'd fall into the mote and leave her there. Of course, with that heavy armor on he'd likely sink like an anchor. But it was Siegfried - the man was virtually pure muscle. He'd have no problem swimming with an actual anchor tied onto his back.

Tira, however, wouldn't let him go so easily. She lunged out and grabbed his hand, stopping him from performing his planned task. "Where do you think you're going?"

"Well, I thought I'd take your disappointment from you."

"Nuh-uh, you're staying right here with me," she replied, walking into a hug. She wrapped her arms around his mid-torso, burying her head in his breastplate. Growling in disdain, she slipped her hands up to his shoulder and undid the armor's fastenings, leaving it to fall to the floor of the raft. Then she went about readjusting herself to the earlier posture, arms around him and head burrowed into his strong, solid, defined chest. Of course, his under-armor shirt was still there, but it was good enough for her. It was starting to quell that screaming hunger inside her.

Siegfried was caught mostly by surprise. Clearly he hadn't expected this much to happen so soon. However, he went along, wrapping his arms around her shoulders and neck and resting his face on the top of her head. Her hair had some keen scent to it, something he thought familiar, but couldn't quite place.

A thundercloud announced its presence above, and soon after it began to weep. Siegfried looked up into the oncoming downpour, eyes closing. The rain brought him peace. It brought him comfort.

Or perhaps it was that he was with someone in the rain.

His hair began to slick to his face, and his neck, and his back. The under-armor cloths clung to his body with all the moisture they absorbed, even further establishing his well-built frame. After all, someone doesn't wield a sword like Requiem or Soul Edge for long without toning up quite a bit.

Tira sighed into his skin. She too, enjoyed the rain, but perhaps the enjoyment was enhanced because she was with Siegfried. Or perhaps her enjoyment of Siegfried was enhanced because of the rain. Or perhaps these two matters combined brought their own orgasm of ecstasy to life, something she'd never felt or known before. She took half a step back and laid her right hand on his left shoulder, letting it slide down to about halfway down his chest (not on his pectorals, mind you, but to her right of them - like halfway between his chest and his arm) and slowly brought her face up to stare into his eyes. Her own hair had slicked down moderately, streamlines along her head. He looked down into her face, water draining down his, and started to move in. She, too, was compelled, but the very instant before their lips would have touched she pulled back. He opened his eyes and looked curiously at her.

"What's wrong?' he asked in a soft voice. She looked up at him for a moment, almost appearing as if she'd cry, then looked back down.

"I'm…" she said slowly, "I'm not like you… I feel like… like this shouldn't happen… like this is… forbidden…"

"I know you're not like me…" he said, "but that's why…" He paused. Then he undid the straps on his gauntlets, letting the metal fall just like the armor before it. His pauldrons fell as well. He slipped off his gloves and placed his left hand on her right cheek, slowly tilting her face back up. Her makeup had run a little from her tears, and she was biting her lip to fight her weakness. "That's why I want YOU by my side, Tira… Nobody else is like you. Nobody knows the curse I know… Nobody knows the curse you know… Better than we do."

He picked up a glove and wiped away her flawed makeup. Her whole body tingled in response to his warm touch. How was it that this one man, this so-tortured and irredeemable soul, could know her so well? How was it that only he could make her feel this way? She practically tackled him into a hug, sobbing hysterically into his chest as the rain began putting down ten times as much as before. He hugged her, rubbing her back and softly shushing her until she had lulled out enough to be calm. Her make-up was entirely gone now, save for the faint traces of green glitter where her eye shadow had been. She was still holding her bottom lip in her teeth.

They continued to embrace like that until the raft came to a drop-off point. Siegfried scooped Tira off of her feet, into his arms, and carried her off into the castle.