Stella and the Sword
Samantha, Age 14, Springboro, OH
Stella leaned against the wall of one of the stone buildings in the square. She watched the people come and go from the market, going along on their usual business. Where was the merchant she wanted to see? The man with the cart piled high with items from other places. She scanned the crowd one more time, standing on her toes to get a better look. He didn't seem to be coming today.
“Still looking for that guy?” A boy's voice asked from the shadows of the alley behind her.
“Go away, Leo,” Stella said calmly, recognizing the voice of her friend instantly.
Suddenly, she stopped, spotting the glint of treasures from across the square. The merchant! Stella jumped up, and started weaving through the crowd of people, her leather sandals slapping the cobble stone street. To her annoyance, Leo followed her. He was her friend, but he could be a pain sometimes.
Finally making it to the merchant's stand, she stood back and gazed at the things he had brought today. She skimmed over most of the items disinterestedly, her eyes finally coming to rest on a common-looking leather belt with a sheath for a sword attached to it. She'd need a sheath if she wanted to get a sword. She'd need a sword if she wanted to become a hero. Quickly, she pulled a leather pouch full of money out, and counted the gold and silver coins. She just barely had enough for the belt and sheath. The shiny, iron sword set out next to it was out of the question. She gazed longingly at the sword, then held the money out to the man running the stand.
“A sword sheath... Strange item for a little girl like you to be purchasing...” The merchant commented, handing it to her. Stella said nothing, taking the belt and leaving. When she was away from the commotion of the square, she fastened the belt around her waist, enjoying the feel of the sheath slapping against her leg as she walked around.
“Y'know, you could just steal it,” Leo said, smirking at her.
“You know I don't steal things,” Stella replied, glaring back. She wasn't going to become a thief, even if she did want the sword badly. Becoming a thief wouldn't make her a hero.
“I do,” Leo grinned, holding up a pouch full of money. “The rich people in this town don't miss it.”
Stella merely shook her head. She had tried again and again to talk Leo out of thievery, but he never seemed to listen. One day, the castle guards were going to get him for pick pocketing.
That night, a dark figure darted in and out of the shadows in the square. It hesitated for a moment, as if working out where to go. After a pause, it headed towards the inn, where the traveling merchant was staying. The shadow left the inn carrying something that glinted in the moonlight.
That morning, Stella woke up to her friend grinning over her, holding a shiny, iron sword.
“Now you can become a hero,” he said. “Just like you've always wanted!”
This page was last updated on December 20, 2011 by the KIWW Webmaster.