The city of Whiterock used to be beautiful, clear white, like the first untouched snow. All of the houses made of white ragstone and marble, mined from the nearby mountain.
But eventually progressing technology, made a mark on it. Even if the nearby factories, are not the biggest of their kind, when running on maximum capacity they cloak the city in to unpleasant smoke. Today only those with sufficient funds, can have their house regularly cleaned from the gray dirt stuck on them. Some of those with more than sufficient fund thou, have even magical wards on their houses, to keep their property's original whiteness.
It was the hometown of Freyan Maerven. Even if he left the city so many times on the side of his father to learn the secret tricks of trade, it had a special place in his heart. This is where he grew up, side by side with Sisindra Weil. Having a such a carefree childhood there, he just could not dislike it.
But such as childhood, it seemed to pass so fast. As he gained age many thought that he wasn't as capable as his father. He was to emphatic, silent and kind, and sometimes naive to grab the opportunities in trade. Some worried, including him, that left in charge alone he would ruin the well going business his father built. Most of the company's partners worried, and most of the relatives who cared for this topic, but not kind Sisindra. The red haired, blue eyed fairy, who could always make Freyan's worries go away with a few words and a smile. They know each other too well. They always knew, how to help each other. When they had a childish mood they even liked to play ending each others sentences in public, like if they where twins.
Who would've thought, that the fair and fragile looking girl would end up ranking captain of the Order? As a young grown up, she didn't looked that much for the unsuspecting eye, she seemed just a frail as she was before. But her slim, and graceful shape hid thin but strong muscle under her garments. Would it armour or silken cloths, it didn't matter. As the matter of fact Freyan was proud of her. The Order was tasked to protect the people, mostly by upholding the laws, but not only. While he was playing merchant… Playing, yes. He always thought that. As he still screwed up sometimes. And sometimes big… He made so much effort to learn about interests, a trade laws, and trying to read people, but still his progress was slow. He still got himself tricked in to charity. Yes that what his father used to say. But sometimes it was literally true. Some people truly just act to move the other's empathy, to get what they want. And many times he didn't realized even after it happened.
And then those days came, when Freyan and Sisindra, had to spend their days apart. Well, in fact as they grew up, the number of these days grew rapidly as well. Still, they tried to make the best of it, always writing letters when they could. Sisindra once even managed to get her hand on a distance communicator crystal, making them able to speak almost in person, as the crystal's magic made it possible to communicate via projections. Well at least until the crystal fried, and it wasn't like you could buy the next one on the nearest market.
Many thought that these two will end up married. As Sisindra was from a family with respected background and Freyan with a family with wealth, and most of these people wouldn't oppose that idea. Well many wouldn't, but them. They, just as thinking as kids, believed the thought to be ridiculous. They were friends, best ones to be specific, more like siblings than ever a married couple.
Life wasn't easy and always fun as adulthood came as when they were children, but bearable. At least until, the letters stopped coming from Sisindra. The days, and weeks went by, even months, and Freyan grew more and more worried. He knew Sisindra went North with a group for a mission, but he didn't knew the details. Not as if he asked from her, he was well aware that, what Sisindra could tell him about this thing, especially via mail, she did. Then he tried to get more information about her and her mission through his and her father's contacts, but he managed to learn very little at the end. Sisindra went on a mission to guard some magical researchers, to the Northern Forests, that is all what he could gather.
Until, a new letter arrived from Sisindra again…