A Life Less Ordinary: Prologue

By Sulia Serafine

[This is a Protector of the Small fanfic, all credit goes to Tamora Pierce. I'm broke, so you can't sue me. I've only read The First Test, but as I read the others, the story will fit into place with them. Well, it won't really, but it'll be as accurate as I can make it. I usually don't write fanfics of this style, so forgive me if I relapse into my angst/action Gundam Wing things again. 11-10-00. Warning: There's going to be some tough issues and some bad language later on in other chapters. I might as well rate this PG-13 now before someone gets onto me later.]

[Keladry of Mindelan eyed her new bed with distrust. Every year on the first she came back, they still found a way to show their resentment. The first time, her whole room had been torn apart, but as the years progressed, they seemed to take subtler means. The first day of her third year being a page, they only messed with her bed so it collapsed when she sat on it. She could still remember how much it hurt to have one of the bedposts hit her in the head. It was much better than the year before that, when they set itching powder in the bed sheets and in her trunk of clothing.

"They wouldn't do that again," she thought. "They never repeat themselves." She sat down on the bed wearily and decided to think of a bright side to her situation.

This was her last year as a page. And they were all squires, so she did not see them much. Zahir was squire to a knight out in the countryside, so he wasn't around the Palace. The knight to whom Vinson was squire made Vinson do a lot more work than all the other squires, so when Kel did see him, he was too busy to even stop and say some cruel words. And Joren? Unfortunately, he was around and he saw her often. He wouldn't fight her as much as he used to. She had too many allies as it was, but he still casually bumped into her, causing her to spill her food tray, and did other things. Any other boy who despised her for being a girl page eventually chose to accept it- especially since most of them had become her friends by the end of the first year.

"Hey! Kel," Neal called as he knocked on her door. Thankfully, Neal, her best friend, was still around, although he had less time to hang out since he became a squire. "Kel, are you done yet? Sir David of Renous Bay gave me an hour off, so I thought you and Roald could go walk around with me or something."

"Okay, I'm coming," she called and started for the door. She paused and looked around her room. She wanted to find their small trick. There would always be one and she didn't want to leave the room until she found it and dealt with it.

"Keladry! Come on, there are three Shang warriors visiting my father," Roald's voice now joined Neal's. "I thought you would like to meet them. They've just come from the Yamani islands."

"Think they've met my parents?" she asked as she opened the door and looked calmly at her two squire friends.

"You can ask. When was the last time you heard from your parents?" Neal questioned as they started walking down the hall.

"Months. Letters take a long time coming to and from the Yamani islands."

They were at the end of the hall when a scream came from Keladry's room. They ran back at full speed, hearts racing and filled with apprehension. They rushed into the room.

"What happened? What's going on?" Roald cried.

A young servant girl was sitting in a pile of glue and feathers. The door to Keladry's closet was open, and a bucket of glue and feathers hung down from the door frame.

"All I did was open the door, I swear! I'm so sorry!"

Keladry let out a long sigh.

And so, another year began.