The horses galloped as rapidly as they could, with the high Klahaclén Hills directly ahead. There were whispers amongst the misty trees, growing louder and louder as they were attaining the edge of the forest – the whispers nearly piercing their eardrums. You could barely hear the horse's hooves treading heavily against the mud and rocks of the forest ground. They were getting closer and closer and…

A petite man stood in the middle of the path. He was blocking their only way out of the woods' shadows and whispers. The horses obeyed to their riders and immediately froze in position. Their ears back, nostrils broad and flaring breath deeply. The foliage and shadows went still as the whispers became gone. All was silent but the small man's footsteps.

He walked closer towards a steed in front. It was an Arabian, its coat coal with patches of a deep azure.

The man's shoes clanked and clunked as he treaded to the horse's side. He had deep ruddy colored hair – almost blood-like – and his spectacles were as wide as the stars, only shaped as half-moons. His hooked nose, scarred hands and feet were too large for his body.

"Stand down your horse young man. If you are the leader." His voice was deep but patchy, as if the creatures that stood before him frightened him. But no fear showed in his deep chocolate eyes.

The man that sat on the Arabian got off his mount, standing still by the horse's side. The smaller man looked him up and down, while holding his spectacles in fear they would fall off.

The taller man was slender, almost seven feet tall, but in a very graceful way. He had on an oversized cloak with sapphire satin and ruby stars. The hood lay on his head but a small lock of his light burgundy hair set itself free on to his left shoulder. His soft, pastel, marble-like skin matched his mesmerizing cold, olive eyes that stared off into the distance.

Intrigued by the other man's silence and refinement, the elfin man took out a quill and some parchment as his eyes still focused on the man before him. Then he took a deep breath, to calm himself.

"I only have a few questions sir. For the king's safety and knowledge, of course. So be kind enough to answer them properly. Or you cannot go any further."

He ended his miniature recited oration with a giggle and a smirk, only to have them vanish when his eyes gazed up at the man again.

The olive-eyed man looked down at him, their eyes meeting. "Alright, but make it quick. We have to reach the hills before the sun rises or…" His voice trailed off in to the distance as he looked over his shoulder. So did the dwarf. The sun was rising in the east. The olive-eyed man had his eyes locked on one of the riders atop of the horse in the middle.

On the only Quarter horse, a beautiful deep reddish color – like burgundy wine – sat a beaten and tired man. His hands were tied to the horn on his saddle, and his feet tied to the stirrups. His face was hidden beneath a sheepskin cover, with slits for the eyes and mouth.

The small man looked at him with interest and astonishment. The prisoner seemed to notice he was looking, and snarled like a beast.

His eyes brought dread to the dwarfish-man, causing his heart to pound in his chest, and his blood to run cold. A shiver flew down his spine. He shook uncontrollably for a second or so.

Jumping back in alarm and surprise he dropped his quill. The olive-eyed man laughed at his reaction. The laugh came out in a sudden burst, like a clap of thunder. Birds flew from the trees nearby. His laugh was deep, profound, shocking the wilderness.

"Your first question?"

The small man looked up in slight awkwardness and alarm. "Oh yes, I remember. Yes, I remember," he murmured quietly, talking to himself alone. "My first question…" He cleared his throat, and picked up his quill from the mud. Dusting it off, his complexion soon returned.

"My first question is 'what is your name'?" he quoted from his lines of questions on the parchment.

"My name?" the man paused for a smile to escape his serious face. "I thought these would be difficult. My name is Cüíano. And these two are Unthrel and Fein. And he is Daemon."

The small man's quill danced on the parchment at an accelerated pace for a few moments. As he reached the prisoner's name he stiffened. But he soon put off his thoughts, his quill dancing once more.

Cüíano eyed him very closely, trying to read exactly what he wrote. "Pardon, but what is your name?" He smiled a fake smile, showing white, sharp canine teeth. They were blazing in the twilight.

"My name…?"

Cüíano's smile grew larger, crossing one side of his face to the other. He raised an eyebrow in curiosity.

"Yes. What is your name? You have all ours," he paused looking over his shoulder again and gesturing towards his men. "The least you could do is tell us yours." His stiff words would have enticed anyone in any situation, but this miniature man was utterly tranquil and stagnant about his thoughts and posture. No one could tell what his feelings where at the very moment. Not even Cüíano.

Nevertheless, after an extra few moments under the stone emerald spyglasses Cüíano called eyes, the man's war walls had damaged down.

The man fidgeted roughly where he stood. He was troubled and found it strenuous about giving them any part of his identity. Only he knew that they would not answer any more of his questions, just continue to pester him, if he said nothing.

"It's Dixon," His voice an unclear, groggy whisper that he didn't even feel was his own. "My name is Dixon."

Dixon slowly became steady and stable to move on with his interrogation. Even though his smile was wiped off his face, he felt tolerable. As if telling the men his name was a better choice than disobeying their questioning and going on with his own.

Cüíano felt satisfied with the answer, and beckoned Dixon to go on.

Dixon cleared his throat and loosened his necking. He suddenly believed his oxygen supply was running low ever since the four men arrived.

"The second question is 'what is your business in Klahaclén Hills' sir?"

Cüíano stiffened slightly and leaned his face in closer to Dixon's face. He put his lips to his ear, and spoke in a soft, grim tone. Behind his back, his hands tightened in fists, turning sallow as he did so.

Dixon lost complexion in his coffee skin from the whisper. Then he strode off to the side of the path, gesturing to the others with his free hand to surpass him by.

"No mo' questions?" Fein yelled from the back of his spotted brown Arabian. At the sight of Dixon he began holding his sides, laughing quite rudely.

Cüíano turned, his overcoat whipping the air, and gave Fein a glance of rage, "We're fine." Turning back he gave one more eerie smile to Dixon and backed away.

Cüíano bound back on his steed and they hurtled off. Muck flew in the air following the hooves' rapid movements.

Once they were far enough, Dixon sat his sweaty, faint self on a stump off the side of the pathway. He was breathing heavily from the words Cüíano's reason to be visiting the king. Reaching in a pouch on his person, he took out a pocket watch. He glanced at it and his breathing rate intensified. The sight of the time caused him to wipe his moist palms on his pant leg.

"Fifty-eight minutes. They'd better hurry," he spoke aloud.

And in only a minute's time, all was silent once more, until the sun rose. Daylight surrounded everything and everyone.

All was quiet. All was still.

--

So this story goes on for quite a lot more chapters (which are still in the editing process, as is this). I'm debating whether or not to post the rest, as I'm not quite sure whether or not it's worth it (sorry!). If I get enough feedback on this prologue and on Chapter 1, and enough people tell me to continue on, I shall. If you're waiting for the second chapter, maybe you could try to get more people interested in the story? Thanks.

There's a link to a "trailer" for the book on my profile, because a few people who have read this sort of didn't quite understand what's going on... If you want to understand the story a little more, go ahead and watch. Tell me what you think. Again, thanks.