Phew* This is my first piece of work, so please be gentle, but by all means be honest! I aim to please, and that means fixing or tweaking things.
I do not own any of the characters. They are owned by KOEI Corporation.
"Lu Xun…" spoke a soft, gentle voice.
"Lu Xun, wake up." the voice encouraged again.
"Oh, Lu Xun…" the voice sighed in defeat.
~Outside the Wu Palace, In the Gardens
POV of Lu Xun-
*The sun…it's so bright…*
I awoke and lifted myself up from the silky grass and sat leaned up against the tree. I relaxed myself and listened to the many songs of the birds that mixed with the rhythm of the wind swaying through the trees. I began to melt into a slumber all over again when…
"HEY!" The same familiar voice called out to me again.
A young slim figure was running over in my direction, waving their hand. They wore a shirt with a white torso and red short sleeves, and rouge colored shorts with long deep red stockings under them. They had short brownish-red hair and finally, complete with a red headband around their forehead.
"Well, if it isn't Lady Sun Shang Xiang." I purposely announced loudly with closed eyes.
"Hehe, after I woke up, I tried waking you, but I guess you really needed the nap."
I yawned, "No, it's all right, Princess, but I appreciate the extra minutes."
"Oh, you have GOT to stop referring to me as 'Princess.' We've known each other long enough where it sounds weird when you say it. Just say my name. Not Princess. Not Lady Sun. Just Shang Xiang."
"Still, I don't want to be disrespectful."
"Lu Xun," she said to get my attention.
I looked over.
"Shut up." She giggled at me.
"Ok. Ok. I'll try my best this time."
"You say that every time."
After a peaceful pause, looking at the river, she spoke again.
"Say…you want to patrol the outside of the city with me tomorrow?"
"Uhhh, my Lady-I mean, Shang Xiang, why are you suddenly on the list for patrol?"
"Oh, I'm glad you asked! I finally was able to convince brother Quan to allow me on the list."
*That's insane! Why on earth would she WANT to be on border patrol? It's the most boring job in the kingdom! Petty patrol is meant for lower ranked soldiers or even volunteer civilians. Once every month, one of the Wu generals takes a shift just to keep enemies on their toes. No sensible general wants the job, hence the purpose of creating an unchangeable list. I guess her brother being the emperor lifts certain restrictions for her.*
She stared at me looking for some sort of response or reaction. "…What's the matter?"
"Oh nothing. Nothing! I just don't understand your thinking sometimes."
"I don't see anything wrong with it though."
"Well, it's boring, for one thing. No one wants that job."
"Wait a minute, think of it from my perspective though. I rarely get any action in my life. All I have is sparring with you or my brothers, who I KNOW take it easy on me, and training on my own or with Lian Shi. What's so wrong about that?"
"Nothing is wrong with that, Lady Sun" I received a death glare from her. "I mean, Shang Xiang. Anyway, I get it, but, and don't get mad at me, BUT what if…what if…" I suddenly could not get the words out. I felt my face getting warmer by the second.
"What if...something…happens?" Luckily, she finished my sentence for me.
"Exactly. Explain that to me." I said confidently.
Quick as a flash, "Who do you think you're talking to? I am Sun Shang Xiang: daughter of Sun Jian, the tiger of Jiang Dong and Lady Wu. Sister to The Little Conqueror, Sun Ce, and sister to Sun Quan, the current Wu emperor. I have been training in martial arts for practically all of my 18 years." She spoke with confidence to me and then looked at me straight in the eye. "And Lu Xun, we've been friends for several years, I thought you would understand that." She said that last sentence with a tone of pity and gave me the puppy eyes that made me feel both guilty and flattered.
I let out a long, drawn out sigh. "Right…"
"So…again, would you…like to…join me?" She asked, unable to make eye contact with me for some reason.
"Yeah, I guess. I'm going to see if I can switch in with someone else."
"Thanks a lot. I appreciate it." She joyfully expressed her gratitude.
~ Inside the Wu Palace
POV of Sun Shang Xiang-
*I'm so excited. I finally get to go on a patrol. And thankfully I have a friend that will come along with me. I'm excited, but still so nervous.*
"Lady Shang Xiang!"
POW* We were both on the floor.
"Ouch…Lady Xiao Qiao, what was that for?" I asked while rubbing head.
"I heard you have a date with Lu Xun! You sly little vixen, you two are FINALLY getting togeth-!"
"Shush! Why on earth are you saying stuff like that?! We're just friends, Xiao Qiao. Nothing more."
"Oh, Shang Xiang, no need to be so secretive. You can be honest with me. You two are a match made in heaven."
"Stop it! Don't talk that way. Lu Xun and I are very good friends and I'm sure he likes it that way, and so do I…"
"Ugh…whatever you say, Shang Xiang…" she concluded her prodding with a skeptical smile.
~Inside the Wu Palace, Shang Xiang's Room
I put my bag down on the floor in the corner and began getting my wardrobe together for tomorrow. She took a seat on my bed.
She noticed my mother's locket hanging over my bed on its golden chain.
"Wow, this is so beautiful! Pure gold…and it looks like a heart! This is so cute! Shang Xiang, wherever did you get this?"
"Hehe, that's my mother's locket. My father gave it to me when I was little. He said it was very important to my mother and that she would have wanted me to have it for good luck…I love it."
"It truly is amazing. Such a precious treasure that holds a precious memory."
I couldn't help but smile with pride at my locket.
"So, Shang Xiang…"
"I heard you're bordering our pretty little city tomorrow…" she nervously stated.
"Yes, I am…Want to go?!" I asked with enthusiasm.
"Heck, no! How could you even ask me something like that? I cannot stand fighting. I only fought when my Lord Zhou Yu needed me. I would never choose to go otherwise, let alone put myself in a situation that merely holds potential of fighting."
"Are you sure? You're so graceful when you fight. You can take care of yourself no problem."
"No, Shang Xiang!" She shouted at me.
I froze. There was a moment of silence.
"I'm sorry. I shouldn't have lashed out at you like that. You are the princess, after all…"
"No, it's all right. I shouldn't have pushed you more after you told me you didn't want to."
She lowered her head in shame for her outburst.
"I just…I just don't understand why you would simply WANT to battle. I've never met any woman who wanted to fight just to fight."
"What is your reason for fighting, Shang Xiang?"
~ Inside the Wu Palace, Lu Xun's Room
POV of Lu Xun-
*These parchments are so heavy. I can hardly see where I'm going. I hope this is my desk.*
I slammed all of the scrolls and parchment on my desk.
*I'm so foolish. I should have tried harder to discourage her from this. What kind of friend am I?* There was a knock on the door.
"Lu Xun, I need to talk to you." A voice from the other side insisted.
"Uh, yes! Hold on a second, please!" I scrambled to tidy up my desk quickly.
"Lu Xun, now." The voice demanded.
I started towards the door.
"Yes, already! I told you to hold on." I opened the door and immediately bowed down.
It was Emperor Sun Quan of Wu.
"Ahh! I'm sorry, my lord. I didn't know it was you. Please forgive me for my rudeness." I didn't dare look at him in the eyes.
"Lighten up, Lu Xun. Take it easy. It's all right. I needed to talk to you about tomorrow."
*Oh no…* I offered him my desk chair while I sat down on my bed.
"It seems that my sister was very insistent on assisting our forces. She really wants to join us in battle, but I wanted her to start out with something a little smaller. I know I'm being over protective, but…But I know she is very capable. And who knows? Shang Xiang could prove to be extremely valuable on the battlefield, don't you think?"
"Y-yes, I do, but are you sure you are 100% ok with this, my Lord?"
"I am. It is nice to know that someone she and I both trust is going with her. You, Lu Xun.
"I'm honored to serve Wu and the Sun family in any way I can, my Lord."
"And that is exactly what makes you one of our most valuable and important officers, Lu Xun."
"Your words are too much, my lord. They mean a lot to me."
"Well, that is all I wanted to discuss with you. Have a good night, Lu Xun."
I immediately stood up and bowed to him. "And you, too, my lord."
~ Inside the Wu Palace, The Library
*I need to get this done. Master Lu Meng ordered me to give some input on our next battle. Shu was supposed to merely temporarily station themselves at Jing Province until they establish a more stronger and bigger domain for themselves. Shu captured Yi Province a while ago, but still have not returned Jing to us as promised. General Guan Yu is in charge of Jing. The original plan is to take it while Guan Yu is attacking the north, but…maybe…maybe if we gain his trust more, that will lower his guard and maybe he won't leave as many troops at Jing when he goes to attack Wei in the north. With lower Shu troops at Jing, we might be able to take it back quickly and-*
"Gan Ning,…what is it?" I asked with much impatience and irritation.
"Someone has a date with a certain princess tomorrow, I hear." He punched my shoulder, teasingly.
Blood instantly rushed to my face. "For crying out loud, it's nothing like that. She asked me to come along, so I am. Why is everyone making this out to be more than it is?"
"Everyone? So I'm not the only one who thought this?"
"Erm…well, no. The two Qiaos confronted me about it, as did Lord Lu Meng."
"Well, everyone can only assume that because not only did we hear it will be the two of you, but we saw Lord Sun Quan have a talk with you about it in your room."
"…wait, how did you know that that is what we talked about?...You mean, all of you were outside of my door listening to our conversation?!" I felt my face immediately go pale.
He laughed at me with a wide, stupid grin on his face.
"Watch out, Lu Xun. You don't want to be attacked by mean old bandits tomorrow. Beware!" He mockingly said while exiting the library.
*Great. Bandits. Another thing I have to worry about.*