The Underdogs
T.K. Anez

Prologue

Long ago, when the nation of Canduasa was nothing more than a budding cluster of islands in the middle of the Pacific Ocean, King Nikolaz enlisted seven of the world's most progressive minds gathered in the island of Yuvari to create a talisman so powerful that it could conquer his greatest adversary: death. His daughter, the young Princess Isobel, was gravely ill, and he promised the seven immeasurable wealth if they could find a way to save his child.

Through hardship and turmoil, the team of seven conceived such a gemstone, and bestowed it upon the great king. All the king needed to do was channel the energy of himself and six others into the stone, and his daughter would be well again. However, the night the deed was set to be done, one of the seven had a vision. She foresaw that if Princess Isobel survived, one of her descendants would bear twins, and those twins would bring war to Yuvari Island and destroy the great monarchy of Canduasa.

Desperate to save her beloved nation, the woman pleaded with the king not to use the gemstone. But the king would not listen, and healed his sick daughter with the help of six of his most trusted servants. Furious that she had been ignored, the woman tried to wrest the gemstone from the king's hands, but it was destroyed in the struggle, breaking into seven pieces.

Convinced that the jewels would drive his people mad, King Nikolaz scattered the pieces across his land, from Yuvari Island, to Kohta City, to the Atsu Desert, in hopes that no one would ever find them.

Centuries later, Princess Maria of Yuvari gave birth to twins, a girl and a boy. Hounded by memories of the old prophecy, the princess's parents, the reigning king and queen, ordered the twins to be left in the outskirts of the islands to perish. The twins' father would not accept the fate of his children, but when he tried to defy the orders of the monarchy, he was sentenced to public execution. Days later, unable to handle her grief, Princess Maria took her own life.

Outraged by these incidents, the already unsettled people of Yuvari rose up against the monarchy. Sympathizers in Kohta City and Atsu Desert came to their defense, flocking to the island to fight in the late Princess Maria's name. War raged for years, destroying the royal land, and in some places, is still being fought to this day.