After days of travel, the group finally reached the kingdom of Rausten. L’Arachel, being the key to their quick arrival, allowed Eirika and her army to rest for the night.
As they were preparing themselves to sleep, a sudden outburst from the gates of the kingdom was heard. Riev, one of Grado’s six generals, has invaded the castle in search of the country’s Sacred Stone. The group had no choice but to set aside their slumber and fight.
A myriad of enemy reinforcements came, outnumbering Eirika’s army and the soldiers of Rausten. But their strength was beyond than that of their enemies. Hours had passed before they successfully defeated every Grado soldier, and Riev had no choice but to retreat.
Not only Eirika was awfully exhausted, but her entire army too. Luckily, they didn’t lose any valuable people, but they had brutal injuries. L’Arachel’s sacred staff, Latona, peacefully restored everyone’s health. However, Natasha remained uneasy.
“Princess Eirika… have you seen Joshua?”
The princess scanned the room to search for the redhead. She couldn’t see him either, even with the lights turned on.
“I haven’t. He is with our group, isn’t he, Seth?”
The knight nodded.
“I’m sorry, Natasha, but we haven’t seen him. Come, let us find him together.”
Eirika, Natasha, and Seth searched for the prince within the castle. The rest remained in a vacant room where they can rest.
As minutes passed by, Natasha became more worried. The three of them had gone their own ways looking for the male, but none of them had seen him. The cleric, faithfully holding on to her stave to light her way, prayed for his safety.
She noticed someone who was lying down on the marble floor. He seemed familiar; he was Joshua. Quickly, the female came to his aid, but his condition was too pitiful for her to handle.
“Joshua? Joshua! Wake up, please! It’s me, Natasha!”
Natasha desperately tried to heal him, but even the most powerful stave couldn’t do so. Before death came to him, at the sound of her name he opened his heavy eyes for one look. A smile formed on his pale face, carefully touching the female’s blond hair. He pitied himself for not having the strength to speak and tell her what he felt towards her. Her name was on his lips when he finally let go and death closed his crimson eyes.
The female cried. She was unable to prove herself as a competent healer. But it was too late. She knew Joshua couldn’t survive the moment she saw him, hopelessly breathing for life. Her heart shattered into pieces, pitying herself as well, for being too late to tell him what she felt.
“You were brave, Joshua. You fought valiantly. But I too can be brave. I too can love. Only death would have had the power to separate us. It shall not have that power now.”
She plunged into her heart the sword that the gambler used. They died together, with their fingers intertwined, and their fates, too.
Eirika and her army mourned the death of the two, who never let go of each other despite not knowing what they truly felt for each other. Death is indeed merciless, and powerful.