Discliamer: I only own the charactes' children.

NOTE: DO NOT ASK ME WHY THERE IS A BALL JUST GO WITH IT!

WARNING: The proulog is pretty stupid, considering Hali is supposed to be the focus of the story. It's actually just so you, the readers, can get used to him in a small dose before the real crap begins and so we can get a bit of an exposition on him and in a few chapters, you'll see why.

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Proulog-The King And The Marquis

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Seventh month of 734 O.V.

Rabanastre, Dalmasca

"By the power invested in me, I now pronounce you King Rassler B'Nargin Dalmasca. May peace reign your rule. Faram."

Rassler, or Rass when not being formal, carefully stood up so as not to throw the crown that now perched on his head off. Formerly prince, the now-king looked to his people and raised a hand in a salute-wave. While he faced the crowd, he looked behind his mother to his three younger brothers-the oldest of them, Halim, whom they called Hali, the future Marquis of Bhujerba; the middle younger brother, Raminas, whom the called Rami, the fiancee of Emperor Larsa and Lady Penelo Solidor; and the youngest of his brothers, Reks, who was the lover of Al-Cid Margrace's daughter. He could tell that at least Hali was jealous due to the way he was clapping. He would have to speak to him later.

"People of Dalmasca," he former Queen Ashelia called out, causing her son to look at her as well, "Please, treat my son the same way you have treated me and my brothers and father before their deaths."

More applause. The rest of the royal family lined up in age order, from Ashe to Reks, and bowed one at a time. There was clamour and murmurs as Vaan, the princes' father, led the younger three inside. Once the square had cleared for everyone to get ready for the coronation ball, Ashe turned to Rass.

"Rass," she said, smiling, "you've made your father and I so proud. Us and your brothers are happy for you."

"Hali didn't seem that way," Rass pointed out as the two proceeded back inside.

"Hali just has an odd way of showing happiness. Kind of like his name sake." Ashe looked down, a tear forming in her eye. Rass noticed.

"Mother?" Ashe snapped to attention. "What was he like? Uncle Halim, I mean."

"Well, Rass, we weren't really related. He and my father were just such sworn friends that they acted almost like brothers and I loved him like an uncle. He was a very god man though. When you brother becomes Marquis his official title will be Marquis Halim Ondore V."

There was a silence. Rass was confused.

"But he'll still be Prince Halim Ondore B'Nargin Dalmasca here, right?" he asked.

"Of course," Ashe replied. "When Halim IV died and I took over, they told me they didn't want to be taken over by someone else, be it Archadia or Dalmasca. Bhujerba had been ruled over by the Ondore family since the Galtean Alliance and they didn't want a change."

"So that's why he has Ondore in his name?"

"Yes. So when he became Marquis they could just shorten it to Halim Ondore."

"Oh!" Rassler clapped at his mother's slyness. "Loophole."

"Come, Rassler, let's wait for the guests to arrive."