After years of searching for the sword of legend, she found it to be no bigger than a letter opener.
Kiana thought about throwing it. What good was it when she could only menace a treasurer? Maybe? She let out a heavy breath and dropped to sit on a crate in the mess she uncovered in the mossy ruins. The humidity broke in the morning rain, at least. Her hair still stuck to her forehead. But she had to take these small wins where she could, or all she’d have was the world’s most powerful office tool.
“Oh. Dear.” A small woman, cradling a basket of more rocks and small driftwood than anyone should gather, stared at Kiana. “So you found it.”
Dirt smeared her freckled cheek, and her wavy hair seemed to move in a nonexistent breeze. She didn’t appear to care about that as much as Kiana getting to her feet. Technically armed, however uselessly.
Her guess? That basketful in this strange woman’s arms was for the pile. None of it could come close to being as important as the mythical sword clutched tight in her hand. Maybe that was the point behind the hoarding. This wide-eyed woman of the wood was trying to hide a weapon of lore, since it could not be destroyed. Not by any force wicked or pure. Or that’s what the legends said.
“Your unkind words will not dishearten me today.” He drew himself up and held a finger up with purpose, too triumphant to be discouraged from whatever speech he settled on. “I’ve paid you a visit because it’s the last weekend before summer, so Min and I will depart for our homes soon. As the top three students of this esteemed academy founded in the name of the prestigious Sherlock Holmes—”
“I will jump out this window,” she promised, nodding to the arched window frame between them. Undaunted, Everitt beamed and brought his ramble to a surprisingly early close.