Berra — Trust In Swords
????, Fire Season, Harmony Week
1626, Harmony Week, Fire Season [[[s01:session-33|Session 33]]]
It is towards the end of Sea Season that Berra approaches Finarvi with a thoughtful look and a question. “Can you make swords?” It might be an odd one to ask, but then again, there are charms for every sort of thing, and a person’s Runes or oaths can stop them making certain items. She seems to think of it as an entirely normal question, anyhow.
Finarvi was fiddling with a worn strap on a pack, but he looks up at Berra’s approach. “I can,” he says slowly.
“I need a spare,” she says. “But I need to get something before I make it. Before you make it. How much would it cost from you?”
Finarvi thinks about his supplies. “Do you want sword the same size as Wind Tooth? I will need to check the cost and quality of the bronze I can buy here, but if you can supply good metal, it will be cheaper.” He names a price that is 20% less than he would normally charge for the labour. ((Bargain 16/40))
“I can’t supply metal, except one tiny bit, and that’s up at my Tula. The price seems fair, though. Any price probably would to be honest.” (( Fail on Bargain, but you’re nice! ))
And, after the visit to the Green Fish, at the start of Fire Season, Berra comes back to see Finarvi, and this time she has something with her. It’s a small twist of skin which she offers over. “This should go into my new Sword. I’d like a bit of decoration on the crossguard as well. It’s a left-hand sword for when I can’t have my shield. It should have something that means protection, maybe little Earth runes.”
Finarvi nods, takes the twist of skin and puzzles over it. “How do you want it used?” He asks eventually.
“Just melt it in.” Inside the skin is a small, hard thing. “It’s… it’s a thing that means something to me. The skin’s just so I didn’t lose it on the way here.” Berra grins. “I’ve got a lot more of them, but this one’s going in here.”
“Anywhere in the casting?” Finarvi asks. He unwraps the little bit of hide, curious as to what he’s going to be putting in his metal.
It’s a bit of metal, bronze, in fact. It would in theory present no problems, but it might need a little wrangling to release it of any of the work already done to it, if magic was used. It’s a hobnail, worn and used, probably well made once, but scarred by the road. “I didn’t know I could choose. I thought it all just got poured,” Berra replies, uncertain.
“I could melt it and pour it, or I could pour it before it’s melted, or push it into the mould then pour,” he explains. “But with a sword, I would not want to risk any weakness in the blade.”
“No, definitely melt it. Then the whole blade can share.” Berra grimaces, and says a little softer, “Weak blades are bad.” She lets the expression fade. “You asked before about the size, and I didn’t answer. Yes, the same size as Wind Tooth. It might be an emergency weapon, in the right hand, and I can learn how to parry in the left. I don’t expect to use it much, to be honest.”
Finarvi grins in delight at the task ahead, then sobers and lowers his gaze. “If it would not be disrespectful,” he offers, “I would ask to use Wind Tooth as the image for the mould. You are most welcome to be present, if that would be your wish.”
Berra shakes her head. “I thought about that, but I decided she should not be copied. Not directly, anyway. I can keep her there if you want to look, but she’s… she is her, and there won’t be another.”
Finarvi looks unhappy, rather than disappointed. “As you wish. I’m no forger, to try to copy the craft of another. I have not made many swords. Many spears and arrowheads, but not long blades meant to keep a warrior alive in battle. I would like to take measurements of her, for she is a strong sword.”
“No, I mean… it’s not about forging. It’s about her. She’s more than strong. She’s … she’s been a long way with me, and a long way before that, and … it just seems wrong to do it. She’s strong backed, but that isn’t what makes her into her.” Berra draws the sword, takes a deep breath, and offers it over. “You’re a Clan Cousin. I trust you.”
Finarvi looks taken aback. He stands to accept the sword. “Thank you, Cousin. I’ll strive to make a sword you can trust, as well.”
The red-metal blade has a Truth Rune painted on either side of the blade, the tops of the Y just touching the hilt. There are other marks on the hilt, mostly from use, but some obviously scratched on purpose, tiny Death Runes, an old, faded Beast, and the wear of years. Berra smiles nervously. “Whatever measurements you like, but don’t make a mould from her, and don’t put her down on the ground, unless she’s scabbarded.” With some effort, worry clear on her face, Berra unbuckles her scabbard too. “I’m due back at the Temple in a few hours, and I’ll need her.” Her left hand falls to where the hilt should be and she grasps empty air.
Finarvi smiles warmly. “Stay with me and I’ll take the measurements now. Once I know we will be in one place for more than a handful of days I can start crafting the mould. Do you want the hilt moulded too or riveted? Wood or bone?”
“Riveted is best,” Berra replies. “I need to stay light. An extra sword is something I wouldn’t take if I was scouting. A wooden hilt, wrapped in horse hide if you can get any. Otherwise any hide will do. And whatever it is that means Protection. I don’t mind, there should just be something.”
The redsmith nods again. “It is good.” He glances from Wind Tooth to Berra’s hands. “Once the sword is made, I will craft the hilt to your hand. A rarely-used sword should have no awkwardness about it.”
To that, Berra nods. “Measurements, then.”
Next: [[[varanis:1626-0663-apple-shampoo|Apple Shampoo]]] (Varanis’ thread)