The Singing Sword

The day his father brought the sword home, Raghav knew he needed to have it. He watched in amazement as his father drew the sword out of its scabbard. The tempered steel glinted in the light of the table lamp, and the contact between it and the scabbard set the sword vibrating, a sound Raghav heard as his father moved the sword around slowly. It passed within a foot of Raghav, and the sound, now louder in his skull than anything else, seemed to him like a song.

The next day, Raghav’s parents found a note, and the only things missing were Raghav and the sword. ‘I’m sorry, father,’ he said in the note. ‘I had to have it, and what I will use it for will not make you proud of me.’

* * *

“Hum something,” Raghav said. “It likes it when you hum.”

The man was lying on the bed, bound and gagged. Raghav sat on his chest. The sword was in his hand, still in its scabbard. Raghav moved it from one hand to the other, and then held it in both, above the bound man. The man opened his eyes as far as they would go, and moaned under the gag.

“It’ll sing for you too, don’t worry. It always sings. People have been hearing it for the last five years. It loved them all. It’s just polite if you give it something to go on. It’s a bit shy. Make it feel at home.”

The man moaned again.

Raghav unsheathed the sword. Its song began. He raised it above his head, directing it at the man’s mouth. Raghav closed his eyes, and let the song fill his head.

“I love you too,” he said.