Prologue (2nd draft preview)

Prologue (2nd draft preview)

A Chapter by Johnzo

For the 2nd draft, I thought that adding a prologue would help introduce some elements found later in the book, while adding some intrigue early on.

There stood in a forest clearing, a grassy hill.  At the clearing’s edge the forest was profoundly dense.  It was thick with many large living oaks, yet still many more fallen trees filled in nearly every walkable path.  Moss and vine covered all the dead trees right up to the hill’s edge.  Upon the top of this low hill lay a large stone.  The stone was typically grey and smooth in parts, and jagged in yet others.  There was a single feature that was noticeable, a marking of sorts had been carved, or otherwise emblazoned on one side.  The marking was dark as if it had been scorched when the drawing was rendered.  It appeared to be a symbol, it’s meaning was unknown to any of the local flora, not that they cared about such things.  There was an arch with a triangular tip, also stemming down from it were 2 curved lines met with another angled tip. 

It did not appear that anyone had entered this hidden clearing in many years.  There were no footsteps or traces of man to be found.  And yet the grass on the hill was not overgrown, keeping the stone and it’s symbol in full view.  A breeze came over the hill as a grey-cloaked man entered the clearing and climbed the short hill.  He stood there looking upon the stone intently, as if trying to remember something long forgotten from the past.  The man revealed a scepter with a single amber gem at its head and waved it over the stone.  The symbol seemed to reflect the light from the shining amber jewel.  The brilliant light shone even in the bright midday sky.  He then began to speak.   

“It’s been some time.  So long I don’t see the reason in meeting again.”  Said the grey-cloaked man, showing a slight irritation. 

“Your countenance has diminished since then.  A voice appeared in the air seemingly out of nowhere.  After a brief moment, a man dressed in black and red garb came into view on the opposite side of the stone.  “Surely you could have patience for a former follower of yours.”  

“Indeed, and you are the only one left from those older days.  Though I don’t have to tell you that, they all died by your hand.  Unless you’ve forgotten?”  The one in the grey cloak lowered his hood revealing a man in his fifties with very short greying hair.  The man’s peculiar green eyes reflected the sun’s light. 

“I’ve never been one to forget the past.”  The man in black and red replied without changing his tone whatsoever.  He lowered his black and red cloaked hood as well, showing a man of nearly forty who was a bit taller and more muscular than the man in grey.

“Then you still haven’t given up?  Even after all these years, still bound to your ridiculous vow?”

“Those were not words I bound myself to so easily.  I know you seek to finish what you started those years ago, and I will not let that happen.  At least you should remember why I vowed what I did.”

“I remember it well, of course.  Your delusional self-righteousness nearly cost you your life. 

Though if you remember, there wasn’t anything you could do about it last time either.”

“This time, things will be different.”  The man in black and red let a pregnant pause linger.  “I’ve found him first.”

The grey-cloaked men let out a laugh.  “Is that so?  And what do you possibly plan on doing about it?”

“I’m going to kill him.”

The grey-cloaked man sneered, “And will that really help your cause, you zealot!  How much more blood will you have on your hands, hm?  How has any blood of the innocent helped you in the past?  Or does your memory not serve you so well as you think?”

“I will make sure of it.  I will test that he is what we seek.  Then what must be done will be.”

“That sounds like the vow of a murderer.”

“You of all people would say such a thing!”  The man in black and red grew angry and jumped over the stone to confront the grey-cloaked man.  

The man in grey continued, “You know I only seek him to take him away.  He has something I need, nothing more.  At least I plan to leave him alive.”

“And to what end!”  He grabbed the man’s grey cloak.  “I don’t know your full intent, but what I’ve seen this far is vile.  I won’t rest until I know you’ve been stopped.”  He then drew back his other fist as a red sparking cloud of energy formed around it.  

“Surely I don’t need to remind you I activated the Truce Stone.  Anything you do to me, you would surely regret in full.”  

“Then I should give up my own life and take yours with it!”  His red-clouded fist swung and seemed to pass right through the grey-cloaked man.  He reeled back to keep his balance as he suddenly found himself standing there alone.  

The grey-cloaked man’s voice rang out over the hill.  “I’m pleased you didn’t try and change my plans this time, I recall that last time just seeming pathetic.  But I suppose the race is on once again.  I’ve been tracking our courier friend for days now.  I suppose I should hurry if I want to save his life.”

The man in black and red nearly growled in retort.  “I will never let this happen!”  He yelled in a rage at the disembodied voice.  “You know I will fight you to the end of us both!”

“Indeed, from our history together I would expect nothing less.  Try all you want, I will finally have my prize.”  A wind began to blow as the voice faded away.  “Until next time.”

© 2011 Johnzo

Author's Note

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Added on September 5, 2011
Last Updated on September 5, 2011



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