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Sword Play

By: radar410
radar410's Profile


Real Name: Jerry Bridges
Age: 51
Sex: male
Location: South Carolina coast

Other Passer Name(s):
not specified

Instant Message Id(s):
radar-410@hotmail.com<

Bio:
I am a father of 4, a horticulturist, an artist in charcoal and oil, a bass in my church choir, a cook (I don't cook no bad food is a widely agreed with saying of mine.)

Writing Style:
I have written several horticultural articles and heroic fantasy short stories and a heroic fantasy novel. I had a novel of 256 pages that was eaten by a hard drive failure. That hurt, but I learned. I also have some true short stories.





Drip, drip, drip, the sound of water deep
within the cave was interrupted by the distinct noise of a hammer striking a
chisel. The light of three torches set in a circle around a small pool
disappeared in immensity of the cave. Several partially dismembered old
skeletons were visible in the light, as if a battle had been fought here long
ago.

In the middle of the torches, embedded at least two feet into the cavern’s
stone floor, stood a magnificent sword at least five feet high. Inset in its
pommel was a huge diamond and embedded along the riser of its transparent blade
was a green falcon. The chiseler, a man of gigantic proportions to fit the huge
sword, was kneeling in the light as well, working his way deeper into the rock
encasing the sword. The unusual blade had been a gift from a Wee Folk smith for
services rendered. Apart from the old man’s size and girth that matched the
sword, the beaded green falcons decorating his tabard were also similar.

Wiping
his forehead, hammer in hand, Lear said, “I have you now! Once more and you’re
free!” A pulse began in the pommel and shot through the blade and fifteen feet
of stone disintegrated, leaving a circular hole just wide enough for the
two-foot wide quillons to fit as the sword plummeted out of his desperate lunge.

Laying aside the chisel and hammer, the hero paced until his anger abated. Once
calmed, he knelt and pulled a neatly folded rope and hook out of his pack.
After many tedious hours, he tried to hook the sword like a fisherman going
after a particularly canny fish, but to no avail. The sword kept dodging his
hook.

Exasperated, he shouted, “Quit moving, Glennfallis!” Drawing a deep
breath, he said, “Yes, I know if I hadn’t sunk you in the stone ten years ago,
you wouldn’t be mad at me now!”

He paused as if in conversation with someone,
but no one was present except the sword. He continued, “But you killed my
grandson. So yes, I stabbed you into the stone and swore never to use you
again.” “How did that make you feel? How should I know? You’re a sword! A bloody,
stinking sword! Quit moving and let me catch you! I need you!”

“For what?”

“To
kill my enemies! Stupid talking sword,” he grumbled as he continued to work his
rope and hook. “I have you now,” he shouted as he rapidly pulled the rope up.

As the blade reached the edge of the hole the diamond flashed blue and the
sword flew to the roof of the cave ten feet over the hole and hovered there. It
was a dancing sword, after all.

Lear had been an athlete and warrior his entire
life. Though he was no longer a young man, he could still make that jump, but
just as his hand was about to close on the pommel, the sword spun around and
spanked him! He fell with a crash. To worsen matters, as he got back on his
feet, the sword was now completely invisible. The Wee Folk smith was talented
and had poured all of his abilities into the forging of this blade for his
favorite Hero.

After surveying the entire cave, and walking in complete silence
as only a true hunter could do, he finally gave up and crawled around on his
hands and knees searching the cave . The much-humbled warrior mumbled, “At
least no one is here to see my shame.” He heard footsteps entering the cave…

“Lear! You’ve been up here three days! Haven’t you gotten Glennfallis free
yet?” Lear whimpered and collapsed. Rana, his tiny wife, ran to him. “ Honey!
Are you hurt?” “No,” he answered, a low moan escaping his throat. He whined,
“He’s hiding from me. I finally got him out an hour or two ago and he spanked
me. Me! His master! Now he’s invisible and he’s hiding from me.”

“Sounds to me
like he’s mad at being stuck in the stone for so many years without even a
visit,”

Rana said. “He’s a sword! A bloody, stinking…”

“Shush now,” she spoke
gently, like she would to one of their many grandchildren. “You know he hears
everything you say. Did you tell him why you needed him?”

“No.” Lear snapped.

“Did you mention the new enemies from the south who attack us with our own
dead, making our brave lads run in terror?”

“No,” he said more quietly and
slowly, almost in a mumble.

“Did you mention how your brother Sean told you how
you were the last of the Great Heroes still alive?”

“No.” His lips moved almost
soundlessly.

“Honey, don’t you think you should?” She lifted his chin to gaze
into his clear blue eyes and kissed his forehead.

Gathering himself to his full
near seven foot height, he cleared his throat, “Glennfallis, you heard why I
need you. Come to my hand,” he said holding his hand out. Nothing happened. “I
said I needed you. Come here!” Again, nothing happened. He called over and
over, ignoring Rana’s hissed advice to apologize. Lear just kept going on about
how it was a “bloody, stinking sword”; that it had killed Camlain and deserved
to be stuck in the stone.

Finally, Rana stepped in front of Lear and held up
her hand. She said, “This is about your guilt over Camlain’s death! You
couldn’t help it! He ignored your orders and stepped in front of you while
invisible. You never saw him till he was dead!” In battle, Lear had never left
a foe standing.

As Rana’s words sank in, his features fell and he collapsed to
his knees, the damning word, “kinslayer” escaping his lips. His own conscience
proved master of him again, leaving him heaving gut-wrenching sobs.

Tears ran
down Rana’s cheek as well as she continued. “Honey, I don’t blame you for that.
Nobody does. Exiling yourself as ‘kinslayer’ has only hurt you. Everyone was so
happy when you returned last week.”

When he couldn’t stop sobbing to listen to
her, she shook him. When that didn’t work, she shouted, “Lear, listen to me!”
When that too didn’t work, she slapped him. He was such a powerful, hardened
warrior that he never felt her blows until she closed her fist and repeatedly
punched him as hard as she could until he caught her hand.

He had stopped
bawling and with a move almost too fast to follow, caught her hand in an
immovable grip. He looked up at her and released her. She took his cheeks in
her hands, gazed into his eyes, and said, “Lear, Honey, listen to me. You
aren’t responsible. You were never guilty. The only thing you did wrong was let
a headstrong boy use your ring of invisibility. Honey, Darling, I give you
permission to forgive yourself. Give yourself permission to forgive yourself.
Camlain is dead and you have punished yourself for too long. You have punished
me for too long.”

His tortured look became confused as he sniffed and held her
hands gently between his. “I punished you?”

She hesitated before answering.
“You dear, dear fool. Where have my hugs been for the last ten years? Where has
my joy at seeing you play with our grandchildren been? Yes, you’ve punished me
for too long.”

“I’m… sorry. I never thought about it like that.” He took her
tear-streaked face into his own massive paws. “Rana… I’m so sorry. You’re
right. I was wrong. Can you ever forgive me?” She wrapped her arms around him
as they cried together.

After awhile, he stood and said, “Glennfallis, I was
wrong about you, as well. I’m sorry for blaming you for all those wasted
years.” Glennfallis appeared instantly in his hand and jerked him toward the
cave’s mouth. Regaining his balance, he resisted being dragged till Rana lugged
his pack to him.

Pecking his cheek, she said, “Go! Save our people again.”



radar410 (Rate Passer) added to this story on Wed, Jul 15 2009 19:32:10 EST
Print Sword Play
Genre: Fantasy
Created: 07-15-2009
Word Count: 2192

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