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As promised, here is the second bonus story idea. I came up with it while I was changing into my scrubs at work, so apologies for any lacking details.

As always, if this story idea inspires you to write (which would be awesome) or if you decide to take this idea further (which would also be awesome), a small acknowledgement would be great!

And so, without further ado, here is “The Nowhere War”:

The Nowhere War Tells the story of Eliza Bluegren and Stanza Ellraizer, two soldiers fighting for the kingdom of Alsar. After an incident involving the prince, a barrel of wine, 30 cats and a porcupine (the incident is gradually unveiled throughout the story), they are placed on duty at Desolation Outpost, located in the frozen, uninhabited North. 

Eliza and Stanza have been friends since childhood, and while Eliza has always secretly loved him, he has had numerous girlfriends and flings, making her think that he does not reciprocate her affections.

While stationed at the Outpost, they meet its strange inhabitants, from the insane cannoneer who spends his days using penguins for target practice; the vain commander (Dullan) who orders his officers to follow him around with mirrors 24/7; and the mysterious old man living in the boiler room who claims that he is from the future.

As the days go by, Eliza and Stanza grow closer and muse on their relationship. However, while on a routine patrol, they encounter the enemy, soldiers from the neighboring Parian Republic.

After a narrow escape, they return to the base. Following this, they spend several days trying to track down the Parian scout team. 

One night, while waiting out a sudden winter storm, the outpost is attacked, and Stanza is taken by the enemy. Eliza rallies the other soldiers and follows after him, braving the storm and the dangerous terrain. 

Arriving at the enemy camp, she is ambushed and captured. Before she is interrogated, she is visited by Stanza who reveals that he is a spy for the Parian Republic (who are fighting the war due to an unprovoked attack by the prince of Alsar, who wanted to show off his military strength, in general the leadership of Alsar treat the people unfairly, and after seeing this the Parian Republic decided to intervene and destroy the cruel and vicious royalty, thereby freeing the people).

At that moment, Dullan appears with reinforcements and launches an attack on the camp. Before Eliza can confront Stanza about his betrayal, they are separated by the fighting.

Making her way to the camp’s centre, she sees Dullan attack Stanza, wounding him. Before he can finish Stanza off, she pleads for Dullan to spare him. Approaching Dullan, she surprises everyone by knocking him out.

As the soldiers gather to finish the fight, she openly declares her allegiance to the Parian Republic, stating that she has been spying for them since she was young. Immediately, the other soldiers start saying the same thing, as Eliza realizes that everyone had been a spy without knowing that the others were too. 

In the aftermath, the Parian Republic use Desolation Outpost to stage a surprise attack on the kingdom, swiftly moving into the capital city and defeating the royals. Stanza and Eliza, now heroes of the newly reborn Alsar Republic, muse on how they had both been spies all along. Stanza confesses that he had always loved Eliza but had held back from telling her due to thinking that she was a supporter of the royalty (the incident with the prince had seemingly confirmed this, but in reality the prince had tried to badger her into becoming his woman while Stanza had misheard and believed that she liked the prince. In a fit of jealous rage he had caused the incident which sent them both to the North). 

Eliza tells Stanza that she loves him too, but makes him promise that they won’t keep any more secrets from each other. Together, they decide to make the kingdom a better place for all.

Thanks for listening! Look forward to the next bonus story idea, coming soon!

And remember, Never Lose Your Stride!