On the table was a scroll filled with horrid scratches that pierced through to other pages, and lettering that floated between the lines. All was unsettled, and for the moment, all was lost.
The great kings of the time endeavoured to locate it, in fact, most of the kingdom was in an erratic frenzy to find it. None succeeded, none that I knew of anyway. Most of the self-elected “heroes” of my town died trying. It was a shame because it meant a depleting revenue for me. I made swords, really decent ones from afar, up close not so much – not that anyone could tell. I had stopped putting in effort years ago when the men grew foolish, and brave women shied away from my store.
I was shining the edge of a blade when a man entered inside. He had large thick eyebrows and a bushy beard, I could bearly see his eyes but when I did they were dark and determined. He hadn’t knocked anything over so that delighted me. There was nothing worse than bending over to pick up swords that a clumsy person had scattered, I certainly had enough to do.
The man looked past the gaudy swords on the rack. He looked past my table wherein a dusty corner I had made, once upon a time, swords of decent build that could turn a brave man or woman strong through a weapon that would be an extension of themselves, an extension of what strength they had on the inside. They weren’t gigantic, they weren’t jewelled, but they were well made to be balanced, and to serve someone honourably.
The man picked up a sword carefully, he weighed it in his hand and he looked at me with the most serious stare I had seen in a very long time. He said this sword was meant for him and as he left to go find the scroll of the land that had secrets that none could remember – I thought maybe – maybe he would be different, maybe he wouldn’t die like the others. Of course, I could be wrong, I’m no seer, and I went on to jewelling a sword – I thought perhaps I should add feathers.
When the man came back in the following months I didn’t look up from my work as he thanked me dearly for his sword and told the tale of the magnificent scroll that he had unearthed. He told of how it had histories of mankind and of great wars that were foiled through the cunningness of one’s mind. He then did something I had not seen and I wouldn’t again. He put down the sword he had taken in the dusty corner, he said he wouldn’t need it anymore. He left.
~ Written by Stephanie Kentepozidis