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Warriors and Mages Incorporated (TM)

Summary: You want warriors and mages to save your sorry hide? Well, we've weapons, and will travel! Lia never thought she would be a part of a company with an advertising line like that. But when she finds herself forced to follow a mage who can't seem to take much of anything seriously, what's the poor girl to do? Coupled with the fact that she has anger management problems, a hot body, and two lecherous teammates besides the crazy mage… Can she even survive the trip there sane?

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Chapter 01-Of Barbarians and Etiquette

"Hey, guys! You've gotta hear this!" a boy yelled, running up to a group of his friends. "There's a Barbarian down in the Traveler's Den, and she's causing chaos!" There was a very short silence, not unlike what happened between sentences when two people were talking.

"What are we waiting for?" one of them asked. Several seconds later, they were running down the street, working to get to the Pub and watch chaos be unleashed.

Inside said pub, a fire-haired (that is, the hair was the color of fire, not fire itself) girl was calmly knocking each of the men who came up to her unconscious. She was calm in the way that berserkers were calm when berserk. That is, she had gone ballistic.

"You pathetic weaklings would dare insult my family!?" the girl roared, slamming her fist into one man's face. "I'll show you strong!" the Barkeeper checked the time.

"Hmm… Five… Four… Three… Two… One… Kyle!" the Barkeeper yelled. "Break it up!" there was a brief pause, then suddenly everybody except the Barkeeper and a raven-haired figure sitting on a small ledge that stuck out from the second floor froze. For everybody else, only their heads could still move.

"Hey!? What'd you do!?" the girl yelled, trying to get free. She couldn't move. "Let me go so I can finish pummeling these jerks!"

"Sorry, Miss, but no fighting between Five and Seven." The Barkeeper said, pointing to a clock, and the sign under it. "You can finish beating them up later. If you try to hit them again, though, I'm afraid we'll have to kick you out. Kyle, let them go." The other figure who could move nodded, and snapped his fingers. Everybody who had been frozen fell to the ground. "Good boy."

"Just doing my job…" the figure muttered. He shimmied down a pole to the first floor, and walked over to the bar as conversations continued. Most of them hadn't stopped. The regulars were used to being frozen for a few moments when the fighting was ordered to stop; that was half the reason Kyle worked at the place during the afternoons and evenings.

"Now, Miss, is there anything we can get you to drink?" the Barkeeper asked pleasantly. The Barbarian girl sighed, flung her hair around her shoulders, and sat down at the bar.

"Get me three of whatever's strongest." She said. A few men chuckled, but stopped when the girl glared at them. After a moment, three glasses were set in front of her, and the girl slid over a few coins. Ignoring the watchers, she calmly downed one of the glasses. "Hmm… A bit mild, but it'll do." She muttered. Kyle, in the meantime, had gotten himself an entire bottle from a small roped-off section of the wines cabinet. Anything in there was his, for use as he pleased. The Barkeeper, Kitchen workers, and Regulars considered it a small price to pay for having him work there. After all, anybody who could stop the fights whenever it was needed, instantly, was pretty valuable.

"Let's see…" the Barkeeper said, moving over to the middle. "Sorry, folks, but you'll have to scoot out a bit. His Highness is coming for a meeting here." There was an awkward silence, and suddenly everybody scooted away from the middle. "Good, good."

"Ah, here we are!" an imperious voice said, sounding quite smug with itself. "The Traveler's Den, best Pub in the city!"

"I see…" another voice said. The doors swung open, and a trio of men wearing the usual garments of royalty entered. A few of the patrons eyed the robes, looking for any bulges that would signify large bags of money. Kyle quietly got out a small book, and opened it, revealing a blank page.

"Princes." He said clearly. Text appeared on the page he was looking at. "Hmm… Oh, I see. Barbarians." The text changed, and the boy read some more. "Ah… This won't end well." He calmly took a seat at the end of the bar, about three seats away from the Barbarian girl, and pulled the cork out of the bottle. He took a long drink directly from the bottle.

"Let's see…" one of the trio of royalty said, looking at a menu. "Ah… Waiter!" he called. A waiter promptly hurried over, pulling out a pad to write the order down on. "I will have the Rainbow Salmon, with a side of White Wine. The best in the house, of course."

"Rainbow Salmon, best White Wine…" the Waiter muttered. He looked expectantly at the other two who were seated at the table.

"I think I will have the same." The second one said.

"…Firebrandy." The last one said quietly. "An entire bottle." There were a few gasps. Firebrandy was universally considered to be one of the strongest drinks in existence, and anybody who wanted an entire bottle was obviously not a normal person. The waiter raised his eyebrows, but wrote the order down and scurried off.

"Now, gentlemen, with our food being prepared, I'll explain why I brought us here." The first of the royalty members said. "As you may be able to tell by looking around, our country brings visitors from all over the world. Visitors who can tell their own countries about what you would be willing to sell. Over there, if you look closely, you'll see a group of the dwarves from the Krantal Gold Mines, over a thousand miles from here. And seated near them, a bit to the left, is a group of Aria Forest Elves."

"Impressive. Ranking visitors from very distant areas. You really did speak the truth." The second said, smiling. The third rolled his eyes. His Firebrandy was brought over, already uncorked, and he poured himself a large glass.

"Indeed. And… Well, well, it's a Barbarian." The first royalty member said, smirking. "I haven't seen one of those around here before… But I suppose that just shows to explain how truly diverse our lands are." He smiled, while the Barbarian girl clenched one of her glasses tightly. "Strange people, they are… Excellent suppliers of leather and furs, but not really worth much more then that. I met Chief Krantal once, and he wasn't very impressive."

"What did you say?" the girl asked, standing up and turning around. Kyle raised a hand, but lowered it when the Barkeeper put a hand on his shoulder and shook his head.

"Did you say something?" the first royalty member asked, looking at her. "Your people obviously have to trade away all they can to survive, judging from what you're wearing." He smirked as the girl flushed. She was only wearing a little more then what taboo decreed was necessary. "I was never very fond of Barbarians… They're so… Primitive."

"If you have a problem with my people, then say it to my face!" the girl challenged. "Unless like the sniveling, pathetic weakling you are you're too scared to say what you think without your mother holding your hand!"

"What was that!?" the local prince roared, standing up. "Don't you dare insult me, you filthy, backwards, dirty little peasant! I'm the Prince here! You're nothing but n uncivilized brute who couldn't last five seconds against even the worst soldier in my army!"

"You want to test that!?" the girl yelled, stomping over to him. The Barkeeper sighed.

"This is definitely going to be trouble." He said. "Let them fight. After all, the Prince is excluded from such rules by order of the King, and I say she can hit him if she really wants to. He's certainly asking for it."

"You wouldn't dare touch a hair on my head!" the Prince told the girl who was currently advancing towards him. "I'm Royalty, while you're nothing but a Barbarian. You were probably kicked out by that rotten fool Krantal."

"Ooh, that's it!" the girl yelled. She pulled her fist back.

"Hah! You don't have the nerve to st—" the prince began. Before he could finish, the girl slammed her right hand into his jaw. His head snapped around, almost breaking.

"Nobody insults my father!" the girl yelled, bringing a knee up and slamming it into the Prince's ribs.

"You… You… GUARDS!" the Prince roared. The guards who had been stationed outside began running in. Upon seeing the situation, they began moving towards the girl.

"Time for us to go, I think." Kyle said, pointing at the girl. The guards drew their blades. A moment later, however, both the girl and Kyle disappeared.

Several buildings away, both of them reappeared.

"What—" the girl began.

"They were about to slice off your head." Kyle said calmly. "You should thank me for saving your life."

"I could have taken them!" the girl replied fiercely, marching towards the door. A moment before she reached it, her entire body froze. "How—"

"You can't leave until I say so." Kyle replied, smirking. "Those were trained Royal Guardians. They would have killed you, and quite easily too, no matter how good you are at fist-fighting. Face it, you owe me."

"Shut up! I don't owe you anything!"

"First, tell me your name." Kyle said, smiling. "You're staying here until I say otherwise, so the sooner you talk, the sooner you get to move around again." The girl glared at him.

"I could lie." She spat out.

"Your people don't lie, ever." Kyle replied. "I did my homework earlier. You'll tell me the truth when I ask you a question. So… What's your name?"

"…Lia." The girl said. "Well… That's my nickname. My whole name is Ellia Krantal." She muttered something that Kyle figured to have a ninety nine percent change of being obscene.

"How about your age?"

"…Fifteen."

"Ah, my age." Kyle said, smiling. "I thought so. Would you like me to set you free?"

"Of course I want you to set me free!" Lia yelled.

"Mmm… Okay. Are you a virgin?"

"W-what kind of question is that!?" Lia shrieked. "You can't ask me that sort of private stuff! Don't you have any morals at all!?"

"Relax, I was just kidding!" Kyle said, laughing. Lia glared at him as he relaxed by leaning against the wall. "I just had to see how you'd react." He snickered. "Anyways… You pissed off the Prince badly enough that he's now out for your blood. So you're going to have to leave the country."

"No big loss." Lia replied. "I never liked this place anyways. Too many weaklings."

"Want to go somewhere where there's a lot of strong warriors?" Kyle asked. Lia looked at him suspiciously. "Oh, don't look at me like that. I just graduated from Magic School, so I want to fight some strong mages to see just how good I am. I can bring you with me."

"Why would you do something like that!?"

"Because you owe me, and you're obligated to stay with me until you've paid me back in full." Kyle replied, sounding more then a little smug. "We may as well go somewhere interesting. I'm sure you'll be able to save my life eventually. Just pray I don't have to save yours again." Lia muttered something. "What was that?"

"I said 'Fine'!" the girl replied. "I'll go with you! Just don't do anything dirty, or I'll kill you, debt or no!" Kyle laughed.

"I wouldn't dream of- Okay, maybe I'd dream, but I wouldn't actually do anything, girl." He said. The boy snapped his fingers, and Lia tumbled to the floor, having lost her balance by remaining frozen in place for so long. The boy reached a hand down to the girl.

"No thanks." She said, slapping it away before getting up on her own. "I may owe you, but that doesn't mean I have to like you." Kyle laughed again.

"Oh, I'm sure we'll be on friendly enough terms eventually." He said. "So it's just us… A just graduated mage and a barbarian girl off to the greatest concentration of warriors in the world to test our skills. This ought to be fun!"

"Sure… Fun…" Lia replied. A moment later, she added something else under her breath. "Come on, let's get this stupid thing over with."

"But of course! All I have to do is get my buddies, and we can be on our way!" Kyle said cheerfully. He handed Lia a cloak, which the girl quickly put on to hide her body. "There we go… If you stayed looking like that, you'd be found in seconds."

"Humph. What kind of 'buddies' are these?" Lia asked, narrowing her eyes.

"Oh, you'll see." Kyle said, opening the door. Lia cursed.

"If they're the sort of people I don't like, you'll regret bringing them along." She said darkly. Kyle just laughed.

"Well, I think at the very least you'll get some exercise." He said mysteriously. "Sure, there's a ninety percent chance we'll die before we even get where we're going, but that's why I think those friends of mine will like to come. Come on, girl, time to meet your new allies."

"My name's Lia!"

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Mayaj, I hope you like Lia! XD

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