Demeter looked out on the star from her place above the palace walls. They glimmered and shone with the beauty and splendour they always had, but to her, they seemed as dim and unforgiving as the rest of her world. Because past them gleamed the red of torchlight, the flicker of countless fires reflecting off of the makeshift tent of her enemies.
Fifty-thousand men and women that were laying siege to the city Demeter had sworn to protect. They had burnt out the farmland beyond the city walls, killed all but the few farmers that had managed to escape, and settled themselves for nearly a week now, recovering from their march and knowing it was only a matter of time before Demeter’s people were starved into surrender, or into a battle they would certainly lose.
The only hope was the Arvidians of the North. The messengers Demeter had sent had yet to return, and she had little hope they had reached Arvidia with her plea for help. But Hope, as fickle a friend as she was, remained the only thing to hold to. And hold to it they must.