Disclaimer: Don't own Suikoden. Chiko and Eldand are mine.

Chikatsu Star

By Delphine

I was born in a small village by the name of Chiko the youngest of five and the only girl. You wouldn't have heard of it, the only thing left of it now is ashes and broken pieces of woods. My mother died due to birthing complications. She lived long enough to give me my name, Lorelai.

My father, God rest his soul, tried his best to raise me as a proper lady. I didn't take. Eventually he just let me be. I learned my skills with the bow from my older brother Eldand. I was so good that Eldand would take me with him when he went hunting.

One day we came back to the village only to find it totally destroyed, our family and the other villagers all slaughtered like animals. To this day I don't know who was responsible, though I have searched far and wide for the answer.

We buried the bodies of those we found each push of the shovel sending a pang through my already aching heart. How devastated I was! I cried until I fell asleep from exhaustion. That was the last time I ever cried.

Eldand and I traveled the world for a few years until tragedy decided to blacken my already torn soul. A large group of bandits attacked us without warning. They outnumbered us ten to two. We would have to run as soon as we got the chance.

I had stared into the leader's face, defiantly. The burly man's eyes had roamed across my body, taking in the blue traveling outfit I wore to the jet black hair I kept in a ponytail. His lecherous smile let me know exactly what he had planned for me.

Eldand had seen that look too, for he launched himself at the bandit. "Run, Lorelai, I'll catch up later!" he shouted over his shoulder.

Eldand's attack had distracted the others, allowing me to escape with no trouble. I didn't hesitate following his orders. Eldand was good; I had no doubt in my mind that he could escape as well. He was just waiting for me to get away first.

I made it safely to Kaku. I rented a room at the local inn, thinking that my brother would be tired when he finally caught up. I then went down to the main room and order myself some dinner.

To my interest a strange group entered the inn, lead by an attractive teenage boy with long black hair covered by a green bandanna. As he spotted me, noting my out fit and bow, he headed over. He introduced himself as Heero McDohl, leader of the Liberation Army. He then mentioned the fact that they were recruiting. Naive boy wasn't he? I could have been an Imperial spy for goodness sake! I decided to point that out to him in a less than obvious manner. I f the kid has any brains he'd be able to figure it out.

I made a big production of checking his out, circling him like a vulture. The poor kid was blushing by the time I resumed my previous position. "You are not strong enough," I stated. "Come back when you've improved."

"How dare you!" burst out one of his companions, a blond with a scar on his cheek.

"It's alright, Gremio," spoke Heero. "We'll come back later, in a week maybe."

A week would be plenty of time for my brother to make his way here, I had thought. I was wrong. He never came.

Heero returned to the inn exactly a week later. "Am I strong enough now?" he challenged.

There was sadness in his eyes that hadn't existed before, a sadness I saw every time I looked into the mirror. I nodded. Eldand was dead, I knew, there was no point in staying in Kaku. "I suppose I'll join you, got nothing better to do."

The Liberation Army took me to the castle of Toran, renamed Auron Castle. The inventor Sergei in the castle's basement greeted me. He bid me to take his invention, the elevator, to the next floor but I declined. I'd rather not trust my life to a machine, so I took the stairs. The first floor had a few stores and an inn run by a woman named Marie. Some others spent their time wondering around like Camille the She-Devil and swordsman Viktor. But what interested me the most was a man that had long black hair with a patch a gold-white on the top. I'd seen hair like that on only one person.

"Sydonia?" I whispered.

The man swung to face me, his face full of surprise. "Lorelai?" he asked his voice full of wonder.

I nodded, barely able to contain the happiness swelling inside of me. Sydonia was the youngest of my older brothers, thought to be dead, and here he was! "How?" I exclaimed.

He shook his head. "You don't want to know," he said his voice going cold before he asked more warmly, "How did you survive?"

"Remember, I was out hunting with Eldand. When we got back the town had already been destroyed."

"So Eldand's alive?" he asked.

"N-no, he got killed by some bandits a week ago." I lowered my eyes.

"I see." He drew in a deep breath, emotional pain wracking his face. "I guess we have a lot to talk about."

I nodded. Eldand was dead but now I had Sydonia. A flame of hope stirred in my heart for the first time in years.