In distant books, the Megilindir’s sword becomes mythical. It will be known by the name, “Hope.” Often Aleyne on her travels will be asked the name of her blade, and equally often her response will be met with puzzlement and confusion. Here is an excerpt where, while at Athandraul on the occasion of the combat trials and fayre, she has opportunity to tell the meaning of Hope…
Aleyne lifted the blade, turning it in front of her as if she had never seen it before. The blade shimmered, with each turn it flashed like a beacon as the rotation went from edge to width to edge again. It seemed to glow brighter as she spoke. “Does anyone know the name of this blade?”
Eyes transfixed on the deadly beauty before them, almost in unison they shook their heads. “Mythical blades choose their own names. You can far imagine my surprise when I learned the name of this blade is ‘Hope’”
A puzzled murmur rippled through the crowd. “I too was puzzled until I began to think. One of the things in life that is eternal is hope. Life begins with hope, life ends with hope, and anything worth doing in between those two points needs hope to succeed. Hope is a journey.”
Again a pause, still the people pondered what she spoke. “Why a blade? I have thought about that often. A blade stands for strength. A blade represents justice. A blade metes judgement. A blade is life. A blade gives death. A sword is more than something used for fighting and killing. It takes sides always, the same as it has two edges. In the right hands it is always welcome. In the wrong hands it is hated. What does that have to do with hope?”
The eyes around the fire were now locked on her, ignoring the blade. “Hope. A scholar in a distant land wrote a long time ago. If all else is gone, there will remain three things: Faith, Hope, and Love. Interesting thing for a scholar to write. You can’t have one without the other two. But what of this sword? You can’t win a battle unless you have hope. There is not hope unless there is faith. Love is the driving power. If you didn’t love, there would be no reason to fight.” She let the blade drop. It righted itself and stuck into the earth, still shining. Its pulsing light now nearly as bright as the fire. “When I was born, my future was a promise. All had hope for the life I was destined to lead. When I die, my hope will be complete. I will walk into my reward knowing that I held hope high.” Suddenly the sword leapt into her hand. She held it up, the blinding light casting no shadows. “During the journey we call life, I cannot do anything without hope. It is by my side constantly. It protects me. If I train, it will guarantee my goal. Just like a sword. Hope is the journey, we can’t live without hope.” Slowly the blade dimmed. Wild, unimaginable colors glowed from within as it became like a normal blade. Deadly sharp, wielded by one of the best swordsman in the kingdom – perhaps the world. Just an ordinary blade. But in it rode hope. The glue of the three steps of life. Faith. Hope. Love.