A child discovers his father's sword
|Jaden looked around him before pushing open the heavy wooden door to his father’s chamber. The old metal hinges let out a quiet groan of protest as the door swung open but no one came to investigate the noise. He slipped into the room and pushed the door closed behind him. His father had forbidden him to enter his chamber on his own but Jaden was too consumed with curiosity about his father’s sword to heed his command.
The chamber was a vast room, dominated by the large double bed that stood in the centre of the wall opposite. Large drapes hung from the four poster frame, tied back by velvet cords to allow the light in. For a moment Jaden stood staring at the bed, imagining feeling lost in the middle of its vastness. He could not begin to envisage what it would be like to sleep in the middle of such a large bed. Did his father feel lost sleeping on it or did it fit his taller frame better? he wondered before turning away and heading towards the large closet that stood in the corner of the room.
There was a key in the door to the closet, hampering his progress for a few moments before he was able to unlock the door. He pulled the door open and his eyes opened with wonder at what was revealed. The sword, his father’s famous sword, hung on a rack fixed to the back of the door. His hands trembled as he lifted the sword down from the rack and carried it over to the bed.
Laid against the royal blue coverlet, the sword was an impressive object to his young eyes. His hand reached out and touched with reverence the polished hilt with the gold plating on the pommel before reaching down to trace the finely crafted guard. The gold plated guard had been carved to fit perfectly into the golden dragon fitted to the top of the scabbard so as to give the impression of a dragon in full flight. A dragon sword for a dragon warrior.
Grasping the scabbard, he pulled the sword partly out revealing the steel blade glinting in the afternoon sunlight. This blade had killed scores of bad men, defended innocents from harm, protected the honour of those who had been threatened by people with no honour. This blade had helped to create the legend of the dragon warrior, his father, the greatest warrior in the land.
His heart pounding, he pulled the sword further out from the protective scabbard. He could feel the weight of the blade and wondered what it would be like to wield such a weapon in battle. Would you hold it with one hand or two? Would you point the blade forwards or hold it at an angle? He touched the blade, imagining himself facing off against bad people just as his father had done in countless battles before.
“What do you think you’re doing, my boy?”
The sword slipped from fingers rendered nerveless as he froze on hearing his father’s voice. He had believed that his father was too busy to leave what he was doing but it seemed he was wrong. “I – I just wanted to look at your sword,” he replied in a quiet voice, wondering what his punishment would be. His father, despite his fiercesome reputation, was not a violent man yet touching his sword was a serious offence.
“I see.” The footsteps moved closer until he was standing behind him. Jaden stood rigidly before him, his insides quaking as he waited for his father’s reaction. “It’s an impressive weapon.” A large hand reached over his shoulder and lifted the sword as though it weighed nothing. “It’s served me faithfully over the years.”
“It is, sir,” Jaden whispered, wishing his father would give him his punishment rather than keeping him waiting.
“How old are you, Jaden?”
“N-nine, sir. I turned nine last month.”
“Nine, eh? When I was your age I was in the academy learning about what it took to be a soldier. Can’t have you doing that, though. Your mother would kill me if I sent you off to the academy.”
Jaden gave a little smile at the thought of his diminutive mother going up against his much larger father. He could not imagine his father backing down to anyone, man or woman.
“What we can do,” he began as he took the sword back to the closet and secured it on the rack, “is have a sword made for you. Your own blade to practice with.”
Jaden whirled around and looked up at his father, his blue eyes sparkling with excitement. “My own blade? Really? Would you teach me to use it?”
“Of course I would. You don’t think I would let someone else teach you, do you?” A large hand reached out and ruffled Jaden’s blond hair. “Come on, son, let’s go and talk to Kobi and see what blade he can create for you.”
Feeling lighter than a feather, a relieved and excited Jaden skipped out of his father’s chamber. With his hand securely held within his father’s, he chattered non-stop about his new blade whilst his father smiled indulgently down at him, enjoying being part of his son’s excitement. It was an experience he had never shared with his own father and he was determined that Jaden would not miss out on any part of their relationship for son’s were far more precious than any sword.