His sister, Sally, to his annoyance, was close.

“You're down here, still. What a surprise.”

“Leave me alone.”

“This tells me I should be here. Shouldn’t I?”

Tom did nothing. She was right; Tom just didn’t want to admit defeat. It was just there wasn't much of a competition.

“Are you ever going to use that sword?” Sally asked. As rough as she spoke, it was something he’d heard her say before.


“Jokes put aside, I think weapons were made for combat. It’s not right to continuously maintain it without using it,” she reasoned.

Tom was finished with his schooling and college. Though he felt that an accelerated education exhausted him, it was expected of him to continue the family trade of banking. He absolutely hated banking and sought adventure. However as the descendent of a decently wealthy entrepreneur, it wasn’t likely to happen.

On the other hand, Sally was just finishing with her college degree. She too, had taken an accelerated course. Sally’s dream was to be a knight. Women in the military’s elite are rare, but she has connections.

“Ah, enough with the sword, Tom. Finish up and head upstairs. I’ll make breakfast. It’s not your birthday every day,” Sally said with more force than usual.

Tom muttered again and decided not to remind Sis. Three years ago, on this day, Grandfather died from natural causes. It was hard to tell whether Sally forgot or chose to instead look ahead.  Tom got up and smiled to himself. He was glad that if anything his sister was optimistic. His smile was abruptly brought to an end. That chill from before had finally reached his heart. Though perhaps it was only his imagination, he felt a mass of ice form around his heart. He let a single tear down his cheek. He wiped it before anyone else could see.

Was this the sword’s doing? He thought to himself. It didn’t matter to him. At all costs he couldn’t see his precious, although irritating, sister see any of his weakness. Suddenly, Tom realized the cause of the tear, only sadness, simple and cruel.


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