Prophets Need Pens
"Are you nervous?" Athea asked as we followed the path that had only been forged from being walked over too many times.
"Yes." I replied simply, never taking my eyes from the path ahead.
"Just yes? No explanation?" She scoffed.
"It's my twenty-first birthday and I'm walking through the woods to go to a ceremony where I will receive the weapon that embodies me perfectly. Yes. I'm nervous."
"It won't be that bad." Athea chided.
"That's easy for you to say." Her sword that had been fashioned in the fire of a dying Phoenix, clinked against her body as we walked, I watched it out of the corner of my eye.
"You'll be fine, really."
"Athea, we have talked about what weapon I would be for months and neither of us has any idea of what my weird ass could possibly be emodied as. Like I said, easy for you to say."
"Ok..." She paused, thinking "but here's why you don't have to worry. It's a weapon Leah, it will be bad ass either way; and it will be so unique."
"That's what I'm worried about." I did look at her this time, pleading her with my eyes to let me have the silence. When she didn't say anything else I pushed on the path faster, wanting to get this over with. The sounds of drums beating in the distance grew deafeningly loud as we broke into the clearing where everyone I knew had gathered for this tradition.
Applause broke out when they noticed my arrival. The elders grabbed at my arms, pulling me away from Athea. She gave me hopeful smile and a thumbs up as they dragged me to the front of the crowd. My heart beat faster with every step I took, I wasn't sure I would make it to the front before it exploded all together.
But somehow my heart managed to stay in one piece with the loud painful thuds. Elder Mona grabbed my hand and a wave of calm washed over me, my racing thoughts slowed to one, 'If Mona is here it can't be that bad.'
Elder Elaina stepped in front of me, beginning the ceremony.
"Leah, we would like to welcome you to adulthood." Applause erupted from the crowd and Elaina waited for it to quiet before continuing.
"The other Elders and I have spend a lot of time and energy not only creating your weapon, but conversing with the spirits to come up with your weapon. I must say, your's was a first for us. We have never been tasked with making a weapon like this." She turned around and retrieved a small black box similar to the boxes everyone else recieved on their twenty-first birthday.
"Without further ado," she said, turning back around, "Happy birthday Leah." She held the box out to me. I looked at her for a moment until she nodded at me, then I took two slow steps forward slowly reaching out for the box. I held my breath as I pulled the lid off, slightly afraid of what I was about to see.
Inside laid a pen, it was a sleek looking black and my name was engraved along the side in silver, the cap boasting saphires set into the metal. Simple, very elegant and beautiful.
"Go ahead, pull it out." Mona whispered from behind me. I turned back to look at her, the hopeful look on her face driving my body to reach back up and grab the pen, pulling it out for the crowd to see for the first time. Whisperes started rippling amongst my people.
"Leah," Elaina spoke out quieting the murmurs, "We too we're concerned when we were told your weapon was a pen. But the Spirits assured us if we remembered who you really are, it would make sense. We spent several days after that recalling all the things that made you, you. With each memory we recalled we realized the Spirits were right. You have had your weapon all along Leah, your words. You are the giver of great advice, the teller of truths. You have the ability to tell people things they wouldn't normally hear. Your weapon is the tiny daggers that grow on your tongue, the physical embodiment of that is a pen." I watched her as she spoke all of this. "And remember Leah, the pen is mightier than the sword." She said softly for only me and the other Elders to hear.
"Thank you." I whispered as I gripped the pen tightly, unsure of what sense to make of this.
I was bombarded by the sea of people all waiting to ask questions I couldn't answer or talk about things I couldnt focus on. I let them pull me around the group and waited for my opportunity to sneak away unnoticed and when that moment came, I slipped my pen into my pocket and quietly blended into the darkness that was now beginning to surround us.