I was relieved, finally, back-up. But my excitement was short lived. It seemed the forest had other ideas.
The gnarled trees bowed in a foul, ghastly gust of wind, blowing fiercely. It was a wonder I kept on my feet, that was until the forest enclosed around us, me, Armes and Naria. It swallowed us whole in a shroud of black and suddenly, when the dim, dark daylight found us again we were no longer beside the elves.
In fact, I didn't know where we were. We were in the forest, looking upon nothing. Just a vast amount of gnarled trees that seemed to snicker and jest. What cruel games this place plays.
What was worse, I only had a few arrows in my quiver and my sword had been left with the elves. I growled, looking around. Then I realised, I had to stay calm. For the other two, I was leader of this company and I couldn't let us go of track. I tried to think, ignoring the other two as I tried to conjur up a plan of where we would go.
Not that, once again, it was any use as the trees rumbled and bowed again. But not because of some great wind but because of the sound of thundering hooves. I swallowed, immediately telling the people to run. I urged them, pleaded with them, shouted at them till they actually did. But this creature was smart and soon had us pinned up against a cliff. I put my hand against the rock and cursed beneath my breath, readying my bow. But if I was correct, it would be no use.
Sure enough, from the trees appeared a minnahorn.
It reared up, upon its back legs and brought its hooves pounding back into the ground with an unbeatable force, shaking the very earth we stood upon. It stood, staring at us. It had black eyes, deep voids with nothing in them, not even the shine of sun. It had two, giant goat's horns curling around it's almost wolven ears. I could admire it's beauty for a while, until it blew air out of it's great nostrils, apparently angry for our invasion.
It was a horse creature, in basic, but it stood tall, taller than me and Armes put together even. It had nimble, but powerful legs that joined to an even greater body. It's mane was of black smoke, billowing out behind it and this was the same with it's magnificently terrible tail. It had deep blue, almost black skin that seemed scarred with a thousand battles that no doubt it had won. This creature, within the dark forest would seem almost invisible; hidden beneath and within shadow. But it's horns that curled around it's ears were of a bright gold and of course highly valuable.
Only valuable because no one could kill one of these damn beasts.
Not arrow, nor blade, no spear, nor mace could injure this creature. I knew we had no real choice here. It was an illusion, each path leading to death.
I took a breath, readying myself and told Armes to do the same. We were backed into a corner, we either fought and died. Or ran and died.