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Upon the blood-strewn battlefield, our swords smashed together like mighty eagles clashing in flight, their talons locking upon each other, each one trying to wrest the other away. This moment in the battle between the Hydra and Leopard Kingdoms could decide the entire war. I let out a roar, lashing out toward my enemy with a vicious kick to his armour-plated stomach. He grunted loudly, doubling over as he stepped backward clumsily. His short, brown hair swept over his eyes as he gave me a menacing glare in revenge. I heaved his sword away from mine, diving toward him and flinging the sharp tip of my weapon toward his body for the ultimate killing blow...
But it was at that moment the steel shattered in my hands. I yelled, covering my eyes as gleaming shards of steel scattered all around me. What had just happened?
My opponent had vanished and all that was left in his place was a pile of ash, gently blowing about in the wind. My stomach churned at this turn of events.
I didn't have time to think about this as the ground began to shake. I barely had time to dive for cover before there was a massive explosion that sent blood-covered grass, soil and debris flying into the air. I groaned as my armour jabbed into my collarbones. I knew I shouldn't have stolen this set from someone that was too small.
I shielded my head as the dirt splattered over my body, bits covering my tatty amber hair. When I heard the sounds of steel hitting steel and numerous explosions on the battlefield dying down, I allowed myself to slowly stand up again. I surveyed the scene of horror all about me.
The battlefield was littered with pools of blood and there were but a few patches of clean grass remaining. The number of dead soldiers lying on the ground was incredibly high. I estimated at least ten thousand of our best men had died in battle on this day. I gulped, hazarding an estimate of how many of the enemy had fallen. Maybe five thousand - or if we were lucky - six thousand? They had proven to be a difficult match.
I stumbled forward, cursing myself. I clutched my left shoulder with my hand where blood was oozing from a minor gash. The pain had gone unnoticed when it had been inflicted, but now that my adrenaline levels had died down, the wound was taking its place in the forefront of my mind. All I remember was that my foe drew his sword across my shoulder like a hot knife through butter. If only I had learnt more defensive techniques from my father when he was still around...
I took a long, deep breath. The clothes under my armour did a nice job of absorbing the blood from the wound. Even if the gash was deep, it was not wide and did not hit bone so recovery would be quick if a mage or doctor could be found. Then again, my long-term illness could hamper my chances of recovery.
I gingerly stepped over a charred corpse, an unlucky victim of the war. Not far ahead of me was the sight of the grand stone walls of the castle we had been fighting for. If no-one could get in, the ten-thousand spent lives of our troops would have been in vain.
I stumbled forward, calling out as my foot was caught in a hole in the ground but a hand had reached out and caught me by my arm. As I was pulled back, I snuck a glance at my rescuer's face.
"Ah, Isabelle!" I gasped. She pulled her hand back to her face to lift up the rim of her large, pointed hat slightly. Her golden-brown hair hung down to her shoulders and her emerald-green eyes seemed to pierce my soul. She was a mage that was fighting for our cause with her powerful green magic, but the downturned sides of her mouth told me she knew the battle had taken a turn for the worse. If only our enemies had not got hold of the plans for the Bomber Cannon...