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The Baptism of Fire


Sarah Tintagyl
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The sun was just beginning to set when the missiles appeared on the horizon...though they had been feared, no one had really expected them.

The city of Valkurheim stood as the Hanseatic League's finest achievement because to be honest, as a country they didn't have much to show for. They were still a developing country, weak militarily, decently weak economically too, however where they lacked in political and economic power, their Lady Protector made up in creativity and philosophic prowess as best as she could to serve the world around her. Sarah Tintagyl, the Lady Protector of the Hanseatic League was not a fighter by any means, she was a pacifist at heart and hoped even though the world was at war that the Hansa would be able to pull out of it with out a scratch against them. The Sith were already powerful, they didn't need a bunch of gun-toting hippies to make their ranks unorganized. But the divide was beginning to narrow almost at the end of everyday as nations of The Phoenix Federation stepped closer and closer towards Sith territory, towards Hanseatic territory. For the girl that never almost received mail, unless it was small current events that were happening around the world, Sarah found her desk cluttered constantly with letters and missives begging her to prepare for the war that would be at her gate all but too soon.

In the days after the war between the Sith and the Phoenix Federation had begun, Sarah had been blessed to be able to take on a Sith General into her ranks to begin training her rabble of an army and to begin to modernize the Hanseatic war machine. General Albert Peaceheart had done all those things and more. Though the Hanseatic economy had taken a major hit due to these reforms, the army was finally ready. Her infantry was trained, the factories which had all but been transformed into military depots had begun producing material for tank and aircraft construction around the hour, and even with the limited resources that her country had, Albert was able to begin the necessary advances for a modern missile system to defend Hanseatic borders further. It was because of these reforms that Sarah was able to sleep at night without worrying for the very survival of her country.

It was only eight in the evening as the young leader stretched out her arms getting up from her desk and looking out the great glided windows down at the city below her. Sarah had had another rough day, dealing with the stress of reform, plus the stress of impending war had done a number on her young nerves and the sleeplessness could be seen in her eyes. For the most part, the Diet Hall, the Hanseatic seat of government was abandoned. 'Strange.' She thought walking out into the hallways of the Hall, her high heels echoing on the hardwood floor of the building. 'I would have imagined that they would still be in session. Its only eight o'clock after all.'

Shruging the thought out of her head Sarah returned to her personal office to sign off on a few papers and then thought it best just to head back home for the day. It would be a quick walk, her mansion was only about a mile away from the Diet and it was a beautiful spring day outside, for as tired as she was, she was happy to finally just be able to enjoy her walk. Entering onto the cobblestone streets of Valkurheim, Sarah walked slowly as the sun continued to set turning the sky a blood red and as she entered the streets of the city proper it was then that she first heard the sounds of whistling above...

The explosion was horrific and awesome at the same time as the world around where Sarah walked transformed into a blazing inferno as if Satan and his demons had been released from their Hellish prison to once again rain fire down onto the world. She screamed as she felt her body falling towards the ground and cried as she covered her head, fearful that this may be the last thing she would see while alive. Within seconds more explosions rocked the city to its core and when Sarah finally regained the bravery to stand up, though the city was not in flames, a great amount of damage had been done and the air was filled with the screams of men, woman, and children. Some of the screams in terror and some of the screams of the dying whose first real horrific experience of this war would also be their last.

As Sarah looked down at her feet, she was covered in the dust and grime of the street and the ash that had been driven off the buildings after the explosion, for a leader who was supposed to hold this pristine image of respect and power, she didn't look much better as someone how had just escaped from a fire.

"Your Ladyship?!" Sarah heard the voice of a young man as he ran down the cobblestone street. She did not know him, but worry filled his eyes at seeing his leader so bruised and torn from the recent attack. "Lady Sarah are you alright?"

She nodded and rubbed her arm. "Yeah, I'll be okay, thanks for asking." She smiled and him and her eyes seemed to sparkle in the radiance of the fires that surrounded them. Also immediately after, sirens began to go off and another well dressed man ran from the Diet towards Sarah and the civilian with a grim look on his face.

"Ladyship!" He said walking down, holding a piece of paper with small writing emblazoned on both sides. "I think you may want to read this. A nation, called The Dragon's Den and their leader, some ingrate known as Blue Dragon has declared war on us."

"Then they were the ones that launched the missiles?"

"Yes, but they also have deployed a number of their infantry. They've already destroyed our border guards and are trying to advance towards the capital as we speak."

Sarah turned back to the civilian and laid a gentle hand on his face. "Thank you for making sure I was okay, I really do appreciate it." Then turning to her minister followed him back into the Diet, leaving the civilian choking on his own words. "Did the Lady Protector just touch my face?"

Back inside the Diet an emergency meeting was being held as maps of the Hansa and the surrounding territory overlapped one another and generals pounded their fists as talk started on how to successful deal with this impending invasion. As they talked, Sarah received constant updates from the front and though the armies were suffer defeat after defeat, somehow they were stalling the Dragonian advance. Hours later, Peaceheart finally entered into the room with a large smile on his face. He was covered in mud and sweat, but the smile on his lips was enough to make Sarah cry. "We held the front, had to retreat about forty some miles inland, but we put up one hell of a fight. Those damn monsters won't make it close to Valkurheim Milady." He walked up to Sarah and took her hand. "You and this country are safe for now. I just received word that three other countries have declared war on The Dragon's Den from the Imperium of Man. The City of Central Cave, the capital of those filthy creatures is already under siege and the nation is collapsing as we speak." The staff of advisors and aides immediately broke into cheers congratulating each other on a hard earned victory, but in the corner between Albert and Sarah, the talk was much more subtle.

"Anarchy does not mean they're finished fighting though."

"No, we have to be vigilant. Even if the Dragon's are done fighting there maybe other nations within the Phoenix Federation that will be gunning for our downfall it's how the world works Sarah." He said grabbing her hand tightly. "The Hansa's fight is not over yet."

Sarah nodded and released herself from Peaceheart's grip. "We survived our first baptism of fire. We will do it again. Thank you." She lept into his arms and hugged him tightly before wishing the men of her staff a good night and retired to her personal quarters in the Diet. She would sleep here tonight.

Sitting on the bed, Sarah could only think about how lucky her country really was to be able to survive this first onslaught, but could they survive more? Of in a corner of the room was a suit of armor that had been given to Sarah by an old friend long ago, when she was just starting college. He had said that when the Hansa was needed to be saved, it was not the generals or her soldiers that would need to save it, but her. He said that the armor had magical properties, given to him by gods of old. Sarah chuckled to herself looking at it, magical indeed, but the fight was over and so the Lady of Peace would not need to fight for her survival, not today at least. One day the armor may find a place over her chest, but that day was hopefully far off. She drifted off to sleep, worried, but happy. They had survived and they would continue to survive.

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