Dawn was breaking. The chants could still be heard throughout the campsite. Compared to two nights ago, they were fewer in number, quieter and less organized, but they were still there. The scars from the battle had left a mark on the land, but the people had somehow kept their smiles.
It had been a harsh battle.
The battle began on the 26th of June 2012 at 4:00PM EST like all of our battles, but it did not progress like our previous fights. In our previous fights, we charged into the open and faced the enemy head on. Our army might have been small, but our dedication and love for our leader was strong.
We yelled and chanted, charged and ranted, fought and fainted. Our battles were viscous, directionless but passionate. We were determined to prove a point. We wanted to show the world that even small nations like ours could get far in the global battle and we did get far. Against all odds, we held of four large nations and trudged through mud to get here. It was not an easy trip, but the thought of our glorious leader standing above all other leaders kept us going. Unfortunately, even the most dedicated of people fall when their time comes.
This battle was not like the previous fights. We knew something was wrong the moment the fight started. A thick fog of war covered the battlefield. The fog was so thick, one could not see the soldier standing right next to him. Despite the fog of war, we bravely marched on. Relying on nothing but the chants of our comrades, we marched together and held our ground as the enemy fell upon us. Our chants of “YESWECANPERORJ” were far louder than the enemy’s “YESWECANNE”, but as we’d find out at the end, our numbers were far less.
A few of us (myself included) got caught in the quick sand pit the locals had dubbed “the proxy filter”. We struggled in the sand, but to no avail. The battle was truly painful for us. Hearing our comrades fall while we stood still in sand broke our hearts and our spirit to. If any solace was offered to us it was the fact that some of our foes had been caught in the trap as well.
2 days after the fight had begun, a messenger told us that the battle was lost and that we should retreat. I had never felt the fear I felt at that moment. I was scared that our people would continue to fight, that they would lay down their lives for a lost cause and in doing so, break all of the honorable dictates of war that we had followed so religiously up until this point. Whether my worries were unfounded or not, I will never know for at that very moment, our Emperor came forth on his gallant horse and called for an end to the bloodshed. We retreated to our base camp. We were tired, exhausted, but surprisingly happy. Our battles had been long and we had lost many along the way, but we had lasted longer than we thought we would and our glorious leader was still here.
As the sun began to rise, the soldiers, cooks, doctors and everyone else left crowded at the bottom of the small hill that was home to our Emperor’s tent. There, they patiently waited for his appearance.
They did not have to wait long. Looking as majestic as always, our leader walked out of his tent and stood upon the hill.
The crowd cheered and chanted. “YESWECANPERORJ” they chanted. It was like yesterday’s battle had never happened. The emperor raised his hand; beckoning for silence. The crowd went quite instantly.
The emperor smiled his ever loved (but rare) understanding smile, nodded his head, turned around, and started to walk back.
The crowd cheered even louder than before. That was it. That was what we had wanted all along. A simple acknowledgement, a recognition of our effort, that is all we had ever wanted. The Emperor then lead us back home, back home to the land of LowerMidTable.