Malkoff walked through the streets, on his way to the exit of the bustling town of Grates. 

It wasn't the first time he had walked this path, nor would it probably be the last. He remembered his first visit to this place. He had had hope, then, and had found the few houses surrounded by farmland to be calm. The second time was when the place had gained the name grates after a century of expansion and growing. It was a large village at that time. And now it stood as a town nearing the definition of a city. 

Monstroth sighed. Truly, time flowed to fast. It was almost a curse. He had lived for centuries, watching men and women be born, live their lives, and inevitably die. They were quickly forgotten and then more came to die and be forgotten. The cycle continued and Monstroth was doomed to be apart from it. He was jealous. Though the normal men and women lived such short lives, they could enjoy themselves and die with the people that loved them. 

Monstroth just watched as those he loved died. He did not die with them, nor did he remember them. In his head he saw faces, but nothing else. Names were lost, feelings were destroyed, and memories even grew fuzzy. It was his nightmare and no amount of suicidal attempts would stop it.

'You're too harsh on yourself, Knight,' Raphael said from th recesses of Malkoff's mind. He ignored the Angel's words and went on walking. He didn't need some angel leeching on to his soul anyway. 'I am not leeching off your soul, Knight, only preparing you.'

'For what?' Monstroth asked the being. He didn't need this today. He had just learned the little girl from his last visit had died from old age. 

'Time will reveal the trial,' Raphael said, as he had thousands of times before.

Ahead of Monstroth a figure on horseback appeared, rushing into the town of Grates. He had a simple traveling suit and a sword at his hip, but Malkoff could care less about that. He was staring at the horse. The way it moved, the way it watched. 

That horse was a Warhorse of the highest caliber. Monstroth had raised horses for two hundred years in the east. He had to stop when the men in the area tried to kill him due to his long life and never-changing looks. They thought him a demon.

Who was this man?

The rider passed Malkoff in a flash. For some reason, Malkoff felt a connection to this man. He couldn't explain it, but it was almost like he needed to see where this man went. What he did. Who he was.

'Ah,' Raphael muttered in the back of malkoff's head, 'That one has my brother in him.'

Malkoff froze. 'Brother? What do you mean?'

'Can't you feel it, Knight? He is the same as you, though he has yet to realize it.'

Malkoff turned and ran after the rider. He needed to find out more, but that wasn't his main reasoning for the chase. 

He wanted, for once, a companion.

The End

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