Anna and Kristoff were hiding in a building off the side of the main road into Arendelle when the first wave came. Southern Isles soldiers started marching into the town, weapons drawn, using old but good strategies.
They were aligned in a phalanx pattern, shields up and locked together with spear and sword bristling from the wall of steel. Anna knew what it was because of her isolation. Since she had no one to talk to for around 13 years, she had read most of the books in the castle's library including a few books on military strategy that her father had gathered in his trips to foreign countries. So she knew that behind the initial few rows, numbering between twenty and fifty soldiers deep, there would be a squadron or two of archers ready to attack from over the top of the front lines.
Nobody moved, except for the rows of Arendellian citizens and guards standing in the center of the street who moved closer together and brandished their shields and weapons, mimicking the Southern Isles troops.
What the invading soldiers didn't know was that all of the buildings lining the street were crowded with additional people ready to surprise attack them. But none of them did as the troops stopped a few meters away from the Arendellian line. From the troops a general rode through the ranks on a horse and stopped just out of reach of either side.
"Citizens of Arendelle," the general said. "lay down your arms and no one will be hurt. Do not give us a reason to fight you, for you will not win."
The line of defenders didn't offer a response, instead sending dark glares at the Southern Islanders.
"Last chance," the general warned. "Get out of our way."
This time, the defenders responded. The defending lines simultaneously shouted, "For Arendelle!" And they sprung the traps the Southern Islanders hadn't noticed.
Without even realizing, they had waltzed right into a pre-prepared trap. Not two days before, the alchemists and elixir makers of Arendelle had created an entire plethora of barrels of highly flammable liquid and soaked the streets with it, as well as hidden barrels along the street side.
While the soldiers were distracted, Anna lifted her arm and pointed towards where she knew one of the barrels was located. She felt a swell of heat rise through her body, emanating from her stomach, and focused in her hand. A small, precise needle sized lance of fire shot from her hand and hit the barrel she was aiming for.
Immediately, the barrel exploded, knocking at least fifty soldiers off of their feet and threw them across the street. Then the liquid soaked street quickly caught fire, the wall of flame stopping a few feet in front of the Arendellian line. The Southern Isles troops were forced to one side of the street to avoid the oncoming wall of flames and the explosion. Unfortunately, they tried to take cover next to another barrel, which promptly exploded.
Bodies flew and the screams of burnt soldiers cut through the air. The screams were quickly drowned out by the sound of war trumpets and drums from just outside of Arendelle. The rest of the Southern Isles army had noticed the explosions and were already charging in. As they came trebuchets launched giants rocks into the city.
Anna drew her sword and burst out of the house she had hidden in with Kristoff not far behind. She pointed her hand and fired a stream of fire at each of the rocks successively, detonating them and reducing them to small pebbles that rained harmlessly down on the rooftops.
Kristoff drew his sword and Anna readied a ball of flame in her open hand. "You ready, feisty pants?"
Anna smirked, a new kind of berserk confidence gleaming in her eyes. "Only if you are, Christopher."
Guards and civilians poured out of all of the buildings, weapons bared and screaming madly. The Southern Isles army continued charging in weapons drawn. As soon as the two armies met in the streets, all formations and procedures were forgotten. Everyone broke off to fight someone they had singled out from the crowd.
Anna and Kristoff hung back, along with a few elite guards assigned to protect them, as well as the head captain Franz. "Princess Anna," he shouted over the noise of the battle. "We have a small group going around the battle to disable the war machines."
"Lead the way, captain." She said.
The group quickly ran through the town, trying to go around the fighting. As they ran through the side streets, they occasionally were forced to fight their way through smaller skirmishes that had broken off of the main fight. Anna blasted people with fire from a distance while Kristoff kept the more persistent warriors away from Anna.
Eventually they made it out of town, through a side entrance in the outer wall. They found a small group of soldiers in varying assortments of armor completely loaded with every kind of weapon Anna had ever seen. They were crouched down behind a cluster of boulders close to the wall. Anna and her group went over to them and crouched down as well.
"Glad to see you made it Princess." One of the guards said, to which Anna nodded with a confident grin.
"All right, what's the situation?" Franz asked one of the men.
"A ways back in the forest," the man said, pointing towards the forest were a small pillar of smoke could be seen. "their war machines are being moved through. They're trying to flank us, but to do that they have to cut a path through the forest, it'll be a while but they'll be here sooner rather than later. So what's the plan?"
"I suggest we go in quietly, getting in position before striking." Franz said, addressing everyone. "Anna and Kristoff get close to the weapons while the rest of us focus on the soldiers. They wait a couple of seconds for the soldiers to come to us, then get in, destroy the weapons and we all get out of there."
Everyone nodded, it was a pretty good plan all things considered. They all got up and quickly ran across the small stretch of grass between the wall and the tree line. Once there the stepped lightly, the regular soldiers breaking left and Anna and Kristoff going right, circling around to the back.
In a clearing, at least twenty soldiers with axes were diligently hacking away at the trees, cutting a path for the giant weapons. There were six scorpions and three siege towers, all of them Anna noticed were made of wood. There were three soldiers to every scorpion and ten for every siege tower.
Once they got in position on the right flank of the weapons, the couple stopped and waited for the attack. They got close together, Kristoff holding Anna close offering comfort from the pre-fight jitters. They didn't have to wait very long. After a few minutes of waiting silently, there was a loud shout from the other side of the clearing, and the Arendellian soldiers burst forth from the shade of the trees.
As the guards, led by Franz, charged in, the Southern Isles soldiers dropped the tools they were using and grabbed their weapons before rushing towards the attackers. The friendly group moved towards where the trees were being chopped. Half of the scorpion crews and five of the siege tower crews ran into the battle.
Anna and Kristoff waited and watched, seeing if any more soldiers were going to join in the fight. When they didn't, the couple just shrugged before rushing out of their hiding spot. They made it half way to the weapons before they were spotted. Kristoff sped ahead of Anna, engaging them to draw attention away from Anna.
Anna however, quickly got to work on the weapons. She threw spears of fire at the soldiers left standing guard of the weapons, knocking them back and melting the front of their armor, putting them out of action. The stopped before the line of siege towers, focusing her powers and breathing, just like James had taught her.
She gathered her power, feeling a building pressure in her stomach and tingling in her hands. She started glowing red and she could smell the faint scent of wood smoke. When she thought she couldn't withstand any more pressure in her stomach she threw her hands in the air, letting out a scream as al her magic surged out of her.
The top of the three siege towers simultaneously exploded into a shower of wood splinters and crimson flames. From the bottom of the siege towers giant flames came into being, the tower itself being consumed by flame from both the top and the bottom. It didn't take all of five seconds before the towers internal structure to be compromised and all of them to collapse in a plume of smoke and flame.
Anna felt a sharp pain in her right shoulder, drawing her attention away from the destruction of the weapons. Wedged in-between two plates of glowing red armor was a fairly large chuck on wood, and a small stream of blood.
Anna waivered a second, not expecting the pain to be so harsh. She collapsed to her knees before using her free left hand to gently grasp the wood. She was forced to let go as the pain swelled from the contact. Oddly enough, she didn't feel afraid of the pain as others had said. The pain didn't make her inactive. It just made her mad. She didn't know why, and later when she asked about it nobody could quite tell her why it happened, but seeing her own blood and feeling that pain made her furious.
Without even touching it, the wood burst into flames, quickly immolating the wood without leaving a mark on her. To stop the bleeding from the now open hole, her shoulder armor shrunk to apply pressure without her having to think about it. She pushed herself to her feet, teeth gritted in an angry snarl. She whipped around to see Kristoff being surrounded by better trained warriors.
Before any of them could land a hit on him, Anna threw a hand forward, a wave of fire leaping up from her feet and rushing forward. The wave washed around Kristoff, leaving him un-burnt while frying the soldiers.
Kristoff looked at her for a second, slightly put off by the fierceness of her expression. But after just a moment, he seemed to accept something, nodding his thanks to his girlfriend. Then they both turned to the scorpions, with one guy still standing guard, shaking in his boots.
Anna lifted an eyebrow questioningly, and the man immediately dropped his weapon and sprinted off into the trees. Anna and Kristoff split up to take down three scorpions each, working as a team even without practicing. Kristoff hopped up and used a spare knife he had on his belt to cut the cords, hopping back quickly after. The cords, which had already been put into position and therefore had a bunch of tension in them, snapped and started snapping everywhere, effectively breaking apart the scorpion by themselves.
Anna on the other hand just lit her three on fire and watched them burn satisfyingly to the ground. The couple then turned to join the fight with their friends, but were met with the sight of their friends standing victorious over the either unconscious or dead bodies of the Southern Isles soldiers.
"Honestly, you'd think they'd put up more of a fight." One of the guard said, causing the others to chuckle in agreement. They were stopped mid-laugh by a screeching sound coming from overhead.
Everyone looked up to see something most of them had never seen before. However, Kristoff and Anna had before. A giant ball of blue and black smoke was hurtling towards the ground, emitting a high pitch scream as it came. "Get down!" Kristoff and Anna shouted at the guards before hitting the dirt themselves.
The ball smashed into the ground, sending up huge chunks of dirt and grass. A shockwave expanded from the impact spot, knocking everyone back and down, even Anna and Kristoff who had gotten most of the way to the ground.
When Anna sat back up she saw James and Lognath fighting in the small crater they had created upon landing. Lognath was wearing almost identical armor, except his was all pitch black, with a black sun stitched on his cape and etched on the front of his breastplate.
The two were both holding on to either side of the golden staff Ishnaugh had been imprisoned in. They were struggling against each other, trying to pull it from the others grasp or force the other to move around. Around both of them were auras of corresponding color, James' was blue and Lognath's was black.
"Why are you doing this?" Anna could her James shout. "Why all the destruction?"
"Why do you have to be the hero?" Lognath shouted back, she could hear anguish somewhere deep and hidden inside of him. "Why do you fight me?"
"You're hurting those I care about." James shouted, pushing forward, forcing Lognath to step back, then James quickly yanked the staff backwards. Lognath almost lost his grip but managed to hold on.
"Well they don't care about you." Lognath shouted. "They hate us, they've always chased us out."
"No! They've chased you out." James responded. "But it doesn't have to be this way. Call of the attack, stop this destruction."
Lognath just shouted in response, a blast of black magic surging towards James. James' aura stopped the attack and seemed to shove back. Both of them stopping at a standstill, still fighting to get the staff away from the other.
Anna took the opportunity to get a punch in herself. She threw a blast of fire at Lognath, the unexpected attack broke through and scorched his armor, burning whatever skin was left unprotected. Lognath screamed in unexpected pain. James skipped back and gave a strong pull on the staff, finally breaking Lognath's grip.
James then spun around and used the momentum to whip the staff around and land a solid blow on Lognath's chin. Lognath reeled back, tripping and falling flat on his back. James leapt forward and brought the staff down where Lognath's head was. However, Lognath turned into black smoke and shot away.
James looked at Anna, nodding in approval. "Nice shot Anna, thanks."
"No problem, James." Anna said, giving a huge grin, her previous anger fading.
"Now, let's get this battle started." James said, before twirling the staff around and bringing it down on the ground. Blue light shone from where his hands were on the staff. A loud crack sounded and a flash of golden light burst from where the staff hit the ground.
When the light dissipated Anna could see the staff was snapped exactly in half. And standing over the broken half that was lying on the ground was Ishnaugh, still in his blinding armor.
"Ugh, finally." Ishnauh groaned, rolling some soreness out of his neck, then he noticed who had let him out. "Oh, it's you. I suppose you want me to help you fight?"
"Well I did let you out didn't I?" James said sarcastically.
"True enough. And you fight well enough to avoid death from both me and Lognath so I deem you worthy." Ishnaugh said with a nod, "I'll see to the ground attack, then join up with you to beat Lognath."
Ishnaugh then glowed blindingly bright and disappeared, supposedly appearing somewhere else on the battlefield. James dropped the other half of the staff and stretched his back. "Well, that went surprisingly well."
"So, did you win? Is Lognath gone?" Anna asked James.
"Not yet. I just got Ishnaugh on our side." James said, regaining his breath. "But you two or done, I'll handle the rest. Go back to Arendelle, keep people safe and the injured to doctors."
"You can't honestly think-" Anna started to argue. But she was cut off as James turned into blue smoke and shot off towards the sea.
"Well, never mind then." Anna said, slightly miffed that James just left like that.
"Come on Anna. Let's go home, he right, we've done all we need to do." Kristoff said.
"I guess you're right." Anna said, exhaustion catching up to her. Kristoff enveloped Anna in a hug, and they both started slowly walking back towards Arendelle.