wendolyn and Tintara. That was what all the Dryads said when referring to them, even when they only meant one or the other. The two were inseperable. Gwendolyn was older by a minute. The two ate the same things, dressed alike, (when they were in Ys, even their mother couldn't tell them apart) had the same laugh and smile, and sometimes were able to share each other's thoughts. (No one knew, but Gwendolyn and Tintara shared a sort of vague telepathic communication power. By looking directly into the other's eyes, or by touching the moonstone that they both wore around their foreheads and thinking -hard- what they wanted to say, they could communicate a word, or an inexpressable idea.) They lived in bliss, never apart from the other, favorites among the Dryads. With their influential mother, they spent their days flitting about the community, laughing as they talked to the craftspeople, or the village elders. Their shared smile always danced about their faces.
On their fourteenth birthday, moon-dark of the fourth month, 433, Gwendolyn and Tintara were allowed out of Ys for the first time, to explore the town of RhyDin. They rode on their matching white steeds across the bridge, to RhyDin, and stabled their horses in the back of an inne. Deciding that they would cover more ground if they split up, they went in opposite directions, with plans to meet back at the stables before sundown.
As the sun slowly set, Tintara became increasingly worried as she waited. When she saw Gwendolyn's figure running up, she quickly mounted Lunet and spurred him into a trod. "We'll talk at home, " she called to Gwendolyn, "Mother is going to have our hides." They thundered back to Ys, side by side as always.
When they climbed into the house they shared, Gwendolyn came into Tintara's room, the more intracite of the two, and they talked for hours of the day's happenings. Near the end of their conversation, Gwendolyn told Tintara of a soldier she had met, tall, handsome, and charming. Tintara of course pressed for information, so Gwendolyn told her how she had gone into the Inne behind which their horses were stabled. A tall man had come over to her as she sipped the water she had ordered. He introduced himself as Lord Kraelus of Radaea, a kingdom far from RhyDin. Sitting next to her, he proceeded to tell the story of how his castle had been overthrown, his wife and children murdered, and himself banished by the new, self-appointed ruler. And so Kraelus had come to RhyDing, to try to make a living. Gwendolyn took pity on him and offered him some coins which at first he declined, but when she persisted he accepted them. He asked if he could meet her again, and she agreed.
"But Gwen", Tintara said, "what will mother say?"
"You mustn't tell her I'm gone, Tint. Please, I have to see him again..."
Reluctantly, Tintara agreed, for when she looked into Gwendolyn's eyes, she knew that her twin was falling in love.
"But be careful, you just met this man."
Two weeks later, Gwendolyn stole out of Ys at night, leading her horse until she was out of the clearing. She was never to come back.
The next morning when her sister wasn't in her room, Tintara alerted Aeleina to Gwendolyn's plans. They immediately sent out a search party with Tintara in the lead. They split up to search all of RhyDin.
While exploring an alleyway in the back of the Inne, Tintara heard a low moan. She dug through a pile of debris and found Gwendolyn there, robbed, raped, and brutally stabbed. After a quick assesment of her wounds, Tintara wove a simple spell to ease her sister's pain, picked up Gwendolyn and set her on Lunet. She blew the whistle around her neck, alerting the others that she had found Gwendolyn, kicked Lunet into a racing gallop and thundered home.
Gwendolyn lasted but four days. During this time, Titnara never left her side, always talking with her sister, holding her hand, keeping the spell alive so that they could share the pain, and so that one wouldn't suffer too greatly while the other went unharmed. On her last breath, Gwendolyn whispered to Tintara,
"Oh Tint, I'm sorry.. I should have listened to you... I am ever heedless of danger, I am. Continue on our mother's wishes.. fulfill your priestesshood and fill the shoes she leaves behind.. and always trust your hear.. you will find true love, and last it shall.. I will always love you and watch over you, my little one.."
"Always will you be remembered my dear.. I shall never forget you and I will bless you daily.. I love you.."
They joined hands and the moonstones they wore about their foreheads, significant of their birthdate, shone brilliantly in one final share of love and warmth, until one stone went dark forever, and a part of the remaining twin was gone until they will meet again in their next lives.