“I have something for you.” Jheri reaches for a blade sheathed beside her sword, draws it, arcs it through the air. Light glints off the metal. She holds it out to Rasa, smiles when she takes it. Rasa looks at the blade in her hands. It’s a sword, she realises, a small sword.
“You’re getting stronger, little one. A sword will protect you better when you fight.”
Rasa turns the blade, it is heavy. She glances at Jheri, shifts the sword to one of her hands. Is she really getting stronger? She tries to spin the blade like Jheri did, biting her lip in concentration, gloved palm wrapped tight around the leather grip. It is hard to hold right, hard to make move. But Jheri fights with a sword. She fought the demon with a sword.
Rasa touches the edge of the thin blade, the skin on her fingers breaking when it brushes the metal. She touches it again. Sets her teeth as it cuts her, watches her blood drip from the blade, the hurt makes her feel a little less empty. So sharp.
Jheri grabs her bleeding hand, holds it tightly for a moment, “Don’t.”
She crouches beside her and Rasa sucks her fingers, coppery blood in her mouth.
Jheri buckles the sword’s scabbard to Rasa’s belt. She takes the blade from her hand, tucks it into the scabbard. Stands. Wraps Rasa’s hand around the grip. Rasa feels the weight of the blade at her side, something twists in her chest. She reaches for Jheri, clings to the front of her cloak, tries to make Jheri understand with her eyes.
Jheri rubs Rasa’s hair, “Hey, Rasa.”