She rode deeper and deeper into the forest, darkness all around her, a suffocating mist had engulfed them.
A dark silhouette rode up next to her as the vicious brush of leaves and snapping of branches echoed around them. "Captain, do you think this is wise?"
A mighty thump.
She turned to look at the sound, a giant tree had crashed behind her.
A sharp pain on her chest, her back crashed against the ground, a spear had caught her and sent her flying off her horse.
Terrifying roars thundered.
"Captain!" her fingers grazed against the ground as a silhouette dragged her across the forest floor, more silhouettes appeared out of the mists like ghosts, clashing swords against those that surrounded her. The sounds of pierced flesh and cut off limbs all around her, her body limp, why can't I move?
She is half drowning as a river of blood built up around her.
"God save us." whispered the silhouette as he laid her back against the trunk of a giant tree.
The giant tree had its branches lifted against the sky as if it alone covered the place in darkness, blocking out the sun with its thick, dark, and unnatural leaves.
"Beholder." a ragged voice called to her, she placed a sweaty hand on her chest as her heart ached.
She turned to look around her as sweat poured out of her skin, her friends still soundly asleep in the dim lights of their room.
"It's just a dream." she closed her eyes as she removed her hand from her chest, "It's just a dream." she lied her back against the bed and closed her eyes, her heart ached as if a spear had truly pierced it.
"Have you heard the news?" She turned to Peter who is her estranged childhood friend, though he still think fondly of her. Even more so now that their friendship had rekindled.
"Three regiments of the Imperial Army were felled in a single day." Peter placed a hand behind his neck as her eyes widened. "It's just a rumor but..."
Christian, Her head lowered as she clenched at the locket hanging from her neck, Be safe.
"I am sure he is safe." Cassandra's sapphire eyes watched apathetically.
If she didn't know better she'd think her insincere as her expressions are almost always without emotion, though Cassandra is the only person she felt safe around despite the cold and apathetic vibe.
"The General will be giving his graduation speech, surely he will mention such news." Cassandra turned to the gallery.
"Cadets! "Fall in!" Their heads snapped to the voice and they quickly moved into their predetermined position.
A sense of relief washed over her as the General entered and walked up the Gallery, it felt good to finally be rid of him as he had always given her a hard time, it was as if he went out of his way to make her life hell in the academy.
"The Imperial army and the Northern kingdoms had been in a deadlock for years, both sides had suffered great casualties, I am sure some of you have heard."
Her hand clenched into a fist as the General scanned them from left to right, "Three regiments of the Imperial Army had been routed, hence you new graduates will move to support them in Ivalice immediately, I hope that each one of you will spare no efforts to win the war." Peter was right, Christian, her heart heavy at the thought.
The mansion stood before her, it was once her place of joy but now it only brings her terrible memories, the event of that night would not have happened. If only. She frowned.
She entered, her home had been refurbished to look as good as new but the lives lost could not be brought back, Her friends remain dead. And the new servants that replace them are surely Valentine spies.
"My daughter." She smiled as her mother embraced her, it was a comforting warmth that she had longed for a long time. Her mother is her everything, from birth she had never found reason to despise her as she is always the perfect mother.
"May God keep you." her smile fades as her mother brushed away her left fringe, "You had always been a good one."
She turned to look at her father and he turned his face away, surely the guilt had been killing him. He never was a bad father but his priorities had never been the family, he was always thinking about people who don't even know he exists.
"I told you." her father did not pay her any attention, "Why couldn't you just let things be?" her voice rose, "Why?!"
She held back her tears, the raid that resulted in the death of her friends and her induction into the harsh military training was his fault, it would never had happened had he kept his mouth shut.
"Enough, it's in the past and nothing will change it." her mother placed a hand on her chest as a tear escaped her.
"Just don't ruin things further, I am cleaning up your mess." her mother hugged her, "I will never forgive you, you ruined everything." her voice cracked.
"Enough of this family reunion." a tall well built middle-aged man approached, the bastard who was responsible for her friends' death.
"He is waiting for you." his small eyes piercing her as her hand sneaked for her dagger, "Best not to keep him waiting." She is not the same helpless little girl anymore.
I am going to kill you.