Our story begins in the far, but not as far as you may think, Queendom of Landyia and Xat. This queendom was ruled over by Queen Kallista the Benevolent, the kindest monarch that the people had had since its foundation many years ago. Queen Kallista lives in her castle with her Prince Consort, Dragona Pine. The Castle was ancient; the ancestral home of the monarchy for as long as anyone could remember. No one had been allowed to enter the Castle unless permission had been granted by the current ruler of the time. Yet Queen Kallista opened the doors of her home to the common populace at least once a week to judge over the disputes between her people and to ensure that justice was upheld.  This benevolent queen was protected by a legion of knights, willing to do anything to protect her; such was the loyalty that Kallista inspired. During her long and peaceful reign, Queen Kallista had worked night and day to ensure the happiness of her beloved subjects and strived to provide them utopia. Yet despite the effort she made on behalf of her people, not all of them were living the blissful lives that Kallista wished to bestow upon them.  For there was a shadow living in the Castle, and this shadow had the Queen’s kindly heart in its grasp...
- Octa (with minor edits by Venice) 

Chapter 1 - 

Lady Venice Rain, Knight of Queen Kallista the benevolent, Daughter of Ann-Marie (a woman who needs no title) betrothed of the inventor Sir Niall Montblanc, and enemy to any and all evil, was not happy. Well, that’s putting it lightly… more accurately, she was severely pissed off. Seething, she stormed down one of the castles many corridors, heading to confront the source of her anger; Prince Consort Dragona, husband of Queen Kallistas, Lord of all he saw fit, Baron of saying whatever he damn well wants, regardless of the consequences! And, of course, the most talented fighter the kingdom had ever seen. So, naturally, upon his proposal to the warrior Queen, she had accepted. Venice kicked out at the thought as she rounded the corner.
“OW!!” said the thought. Venice span, shocked out of her reverie, eyes scanning frantically for the source. She sighed when she discovered it.
“Hey Gep.” She said calmly, and started to help him up awkwardly off the ground. “So how’s the air down there?” she asked, then noticed just how bad a state he was in. “Merde Gepard, what happened? Actually, don’t answer that, I can guess. Now, was it worth it?” she asked, hoisting his arm over her shoulder, her feather-light frame sagging slightly under his weight.
“Oh, you know, the usual” he grinned, then winced due to a black eye and a spilt lip. She raised an eyebrow sceptically.
“Well, perhaps a bit worse than the usual. He started it though!”
“And finished it too by the bloody look of you!” He hissed through gritted teeth as she shifted his weight as they rounded a corner with a small purple bush growing out of the stonework.
“I guess… wait, I’m bleeding!?”  She snorted, and would of punched his arm if he wasn’t in such a state.
“well, at least your sense of humour isn’t damaged”
“I think that’s about it though” he grumbled as they rounded the final corner, with the finish line of the infirmary finally in sight
“Hey Ven?”
“What Gep?”
“Before you ditch me, hows about a kiss for the invalid?” she laughed in reply
“Awww… please?” he whined teasingly
“Awww… nope!” she nodded at Dr Elviana, the castles head medicine woman. Quinn bit her lip as she took in Gerard’s injuries, and gestured to an empty bed. Venice helped him onto it, and his usual cheeky expression creased and winced. Quinn came over, and gave Gepard a quick once over shaking her head.
“He shouldn’t be too bad, but he’s going to have to stay in overnight” Gepard winced at the news, and Venice squeezed his hand reassuringly.
“You make sure he doesn’t get off scot-free again this time Rain. Not again, you understand?” she just squeezed his hand again. Quinn sighed, and then subtly motioned for Venice to follow her. Quinn bit her lip again, the pulled Venice into the storage cupboard for some privacy.
“Yes Quinn?” asked Venice, trying her best to look innocent
“Don’t Venice. What happened?” Venice adverted her eyes to the shelves near the floor.
“He pissed off Dragona…”
“Again!? Oh why won’t that boy learn!” Quinn looked at the distressed look on her friends face. “Oh Venice… He’s going to be fine, you know that.”
“I know… but he won’t stop getting into these fights. And… and I don’t blame him”
“Venice… don’t do anything idiotic, please?”
“Quinn, I never do anything idiotic” Venice smiled, and started to open the door. She was stopped due to her arms being suddenly pinned to her sides in a non-violent and rather affectionate fashion.
In other words, a hug.
“Promise me you won’t do anything rash or stupid. And please don’t get into a stupid fight Promise me Lady Venice Rain, please”
“Okay Quinn… okay.” She broke off the hug, got down on her knee (not easy in the enclosed space) and place a hand over her heart.
“I, Lady Venice Rain, Knight of Queen Kallista etcetera, swear to you, Doctor Quinnera Elviana, that will I do my utmost best not to get into a fight without thinking it through first or unless my life or that of others is at risk. I swear this on my honour and soul.” Quinn nodded, and pulled Venice into a hug again. This one was of the bone-crushing variety
“Quinn, please, I need to go talk to… well, it was going to be Pine…” Quinn let her go. “But I think I’ll go talk to Kal. Or Lego. Or possibly NJ…” she walked out of the storage cupboard, holding the door open for Quinn, who stooped to pick up a glass vial full of an oily purple fluid before passing.
“Ladies ladies ladies, there is no need to hide in cupboards. There is nothing wrong with two lovely vixens such as yourselves appreciating each other, if you catch my drift. And” continued Gepard with a lewd wink. “I won’t tell if you don’t tell”
“Jealous, Gepard” asked Venice, taking it in her stride. Quinn, however, flushed, and lightly slapped his shin.
“Undeniably” he ignored the slap “You off then?”
“Yes. Believe it or not, there are more interesting people in this castle than you Mr Valk!”
“Lies! But Venice, what if I need a sponge bath and or a good rubbing down?”
“Then I’ll send down the fittest lad I can find” she replied, waving to him as she waltzed out the door.
- VR