In their land, though dubbed the Isle of the Ice, grew broad emerald meadows filled with beautiful white flowers and blades of grass so tall one could simply kneel and be hidden in an instant. This particular Spring day two beautiful young girls frolicked about, laughing and joking as they soaked up the golden rays of sun. Two sweet sisters, the older girl being a platinum blonde with just a dash of redness to her otherwise golden locks; called Natalya, firstborn princess of The Arefyev clan. The younger of the two was a strawberry blonde beauty with eyes that pierced to the soul as crystal clear blue as the melting ice as it gave birth to pools from the perishing snow; Lidiya. Both the beloved princesses of the valiant King Eric Arefyev and Queen Rhiannon Jorgenson. The two girls were raised when the songs of Beowulf could be well heard around a campfire and the tales of magic in the night were their preferred entertainment. For their people, blood and honor were two things that knew went hand in hand. These were dark times but with Natalya and Lidiya being princesses of the notorious King Arefyev they never had cause to fear. The legends boasted of King Eric’s ability to wield a claymore like it were nothing more than a feather in the wind, and his ability to lead men into battle made the sacking of the city by city no challenge for the king and so the Queen held no reservations on what the two girls were allowed to, provided they stayed within a reasonable distance of the camp. Years and years passed with Natalya and Lidiya playing in the meadows such that it became a usual occurrence and the other villagers soon became accustomed to it. Though they were indeed a rough, and nomadic people they kept to themselves, except when they needed something, or in the event that King Eric highly desired something. There was one thing for certain, though valiant, King Eric was also ruthless and if he settled an eye on something he wanted, he took it and there was not a soul or thing that would stop him. For years King Eric protected his daughters but as Natalya grew older and her body began to morph into the ripe curves of a young woman, King Eric began to ponder upon dowries and clans to whom he could tie himself via the proper marriage of his eldest daughter. This meant Natalya would soon have to cease her childish behaviors and play in the meadows with her younger sister. Indeed, Natalya had been blessed with hips perfect for delivering sons, as Queen Rhiannon fondly stated. Lidiya, being only three years younger than her sister, had long feared this day and hoped her father wouldn’t notice that Natalya was growing into the perfect bride-to-be because for her sister to marry meant she would be alone with no one to turn to in her worst of moments. Albeit, Lidiya was a little less adventurous, and much more interested in becoming a wife and mother one day, she still felt some reservations about losing her sister to another clan. She enjoyed playing with her sister in the forest, but she also knew she had to learn to cook and provide for a husband in need one day but it had been Natalya who taught her most, if not everything, she knew. After all, it had been Natalya who was often distracting her to get them both into trouble by pressuring Lidiya to abandon chores in favor of playing in the meadows. But, she also made up for that by coming to Lidiya’s aid at every beck and call. And she was certain that Natalya’s epic and soulful eyes played a part in pulling at her heart strings. Each time she debated, Natalya seemed to have eyes that grew to the size of a large coin with fake tears brimming in the corners. It was amazing how well Natalya could guilt Lidiya into being her companion in anything but Lidiya had a soft spot for her and she wanted nothing more than to be accepted in her eyes. If only the two girls had any clue what was going to happen to them the day they chose to enter an open meadow in the midst of spring. If only they had known a rival tribe had camped in their woods then maybe Lidiya wouldn't have been lost to her family that day. Fate had something else in store though, and by the end of the night, Lidiya's commitment to companionship with Natalya would be compromised in ways neither girl could ever expect.