Writing Group: Be My Sword (PRIVATE)

Writers! Draw your Rapiers, Katanas, and Claymores!

Listen closely. We are entering the realm of conflict. Your job is to be a weapon. It doesn’t matter what kind—physical, emotional, philosophical—whatever it is, I need you to do your job because…

This week’s Writing Group prompt is:

Be My Sword

Make sure you scroll down and read them if you haven’t! You may not be eligible if you don’t!

The first place my mind goes to with this prompt is the idea of a protector. Someone saying to someone else who is stronger, and/or more skilled than them “be my sword.” As in “protect me, because I cannot protect myself.” It reminds me of the game Ender Lillies, in which you play a little girl, and all your “weapons” are spirits who fight for you—even the bosses you fought can become your swords. Mulan choosing to fight in her father’s stead is another example of someone being another’s sword for noble reasons. Even someone who can protect themselves might still need a protector—that could be a particularly touching take on the prompt: someone who is usually very strong breaking down and admitting they need someone to help them. 

It could also be taken in the opposite direction. A villain might hire a henchman, or multiple, to do their dirty work out in the world. Such as the Evil Queen sending the Huntsman to kill Snow White. They might do this because they can’t be bothered with the everyday aspects of villainy, or because they don’t want the evidence to lead back to them. Is the henchman more than willing to help their master? Or are they forced into this role unwillingly? Could someone forcibly be made into a sword? 

“Be my sword” could even have “please kill me” connotations. In The Case Study of Vanitas vampires can become “curse bearers.” When the curse takes over completely, they lose themselves, and turn into bloodthirsty monsters. When Vanitas promises that he will kill one of the other characters if she loses herself one day, this is a relief to her, not a thing of horror and sorrow—especially because this is a job she has had to do for others, and she realizes how necessary it is. Perhaps you could write about this sort of situation. Many stories have the hero saying to their sidekick, best friend, or lover, “if I get captured, I need you to kill me.” A request to “be my sword” might be a request for a mercy killing when the time comes. Is the person able to be the sword in the end, or do they not have the heart? 

You could, of course, take this prompt more literally. Perhaps you want to write about someone on the path to become a knight picking out their first sword. Or a blacksmith’s apprentice making the sword that will be their faithful partner for years to come. You could even write about someone in a shop finding a sword they like, and whispering to it “be my sword.” …Or you could write about another customer in the shop hearing this and thinking they’re crazy. 

Continuing with the literal direction, you could play with the material a sword is made from. Sokka in Avatar: the Last Airbender using the meteorite to make a sword is kind of like him saying to the meteorite, “become my sword.” What other strange materials might one want to make a sword from? Or perhaps it’s less about the material of the sword itself, but a jewel put on the hilt, or a mantra inscribed on the blade that one wants made into a sword. 

You could even write about sentient swords. I can’t think of sentient swords without thinking of Ahrah from Dust: an Elysian Tail. In that video game, the sword with which you fight baddies is also very much a character in the story—something of a mentor. Perhaps you want to write about this sort of situation. How different would buying a sword be if they were all sentient? If you were choosing a companion instead of just a sword? Just how sentient are they in the first place? Can they talk, or do they just seem to have an aliveness about them that’s hard to quantify? It could be a “the wand chooses the wizard” sort of idea. Perhaps the sword resists its new master until they request nicely “Would you please be my sword?” 

Rather than the sword itself being alive, someone’s consciousness could be trapped within a sword. Going back to the unwilling henchman idea, perhaps a villain literally turns someone into their sword to punish them. This could be a moment of true horror, as they become the blade used to kill the good people they once fought beside. Maybe you want to write about someone going on a quest to free their loved one from their sword prison. A more positive take on this idea is the regalia from Noragami. In that anime, spirits become the weapons of the gods. Literally, they can transform into a blade, and back into a human form. This is an honor, especially because, if not chosen by a god, they might turn into corrupted phantoms, and lose themselves. Perhaps you could write something more along these lines. 

I’ve been rewatching Once Upon a Time lately, and that show has what could be a very interesting take on this prompt. In the show, there is a title: “The Dark One.” The Dark One’s powers are given by a dagger, (which, if I remember correctly, was once a full sword), and their name is written on the dagger. If you hold the dagger, you can control The Dark One (going back to that unwilling henchmen idea…). If you kill The Dark One with the dagger, you become the new Dark One. The dagger is also the only thing that can kill them. In this way, the Dark One sort of is the dagger. At least, their power and life are tied fundamentally to it. Perhaps you could use this sort of take on the prompt. A villain might not make someone into a literal sword, but could they tie their life force to one still? Could a sword grant more power to its wielder than a simple blade, and if so, how difficult would it be to let go of it? 

You could take it in a “the pen is mightier than the sword” direction, in which the pen is the sword. Perhaps you want to write about a character walking up to make a speech, internally praying that their words can be their sword so they don’t have to truly fight. Negative words—an insult or broken promise—could be a sword as well. A secret could even be intended as a sword in the back. Perhaps, later, when the character tries to take it back, the insulted person says something like “you wanted your words to hurt.” As in “you wanted your words to be your sword.” 

What happens when the sword rejects the call? The prompt is “be my sword” but speaks nothing of the response to whoever, or whatever, is being commanded/requested. Perhaps you want to write about the person, or sword, resisting. Perhaps, for that sentient sword idea, someone could bow and politely say, “Would you please be my sword?” …only for the sword to blatantly reject them and start attacking. 

On last Saturday’s stream, we discussed the horror of everyday objects. Lee Strangely wrote a story of a typewriter that very much seemed alive, and Arith likened it to the Tell Tale Heart. It made me think of how an object seeming alive (but, especially if it is not) has this interesting layer of spookiness to it that horror stories of a living killer or monster don’t have. Something acting alive that shouldn’t be in the first place is a special kind of scary. And someone fearing something inanimate often creates a special kind of character that seems (or is) mad. Because this prompt has an inanimate object right in the title, I thought I’d make it the challenge: use the unique brand of horror an inanimate object can have in your story. 

Remember, these challenges aren’t mandatory! They are meant to be a fun bonus if you’d like to have a little extra challenge. But, if you don’t want to use them, please don’t feel obligated to!

What are you doing?! I didn’t order you to be a knot on a log! Get moving! Go go go go go!

—Pearce & Kaylie 

Remember, this is part of our weekly Writing Group stream! Submit a little piece following the rules and guidelines below, and there’s a chance your entry will be read live on stream! In addition, we’ll discuss it for a minute and give you some feedback.

Tune into the stream this Saturday at 3:00pm CST to see if you made the cut!

The whole purpose of this is to show off the creativity of the community, while also helping each other to become better writers. Lean into that spirit! Get ready not just to share what you’ve got, but to give back to the other writers here as well.

Rules and Guidelines

We read at least five stories during each stream, two of which come from the public post, and three of which come from the much smaller private post. Submissions are randomly selected by a bot, but likes on your post will improve your chances of selection, so be sure to share your submission on social media!

  1. Text and Formatting

    1. English only.
    2. Prose only, no poetry or lyrics.
    3. Use proper spelling, grammar, and syntax.
    4. Your piece must be between 250-350 words (you can use this website to see your wordcount).
    5. Use two paragraph breaks between each paragraph so that they have a proper space between them (press “enter” or “return” twice).
    6. Include a submission title and an author name (doesn’t have to be your real name). Do not include any additional symbols or flourishes in this part of your submission. Format them exactly as you see in this example, or your submission may not be eligible: Example Submission.
    7. No additional text styling (such as italics or bold text). Do not use asterisks, hyphens, or any other symbol to indicate whether text should be bold, italic, or styled in any other way. CAPS are okay, though.
  2. What to Submit

    1. Keep submissions “safe-for-work”; be sparing with sexuality, violence, and profanity.
    2. Try to focus on making your submission a single meaningful moment rather than an entire story.
    3. Write something brand new; no re-submitting past entries or pieces written for other purposes
    4. No fan fiction whatsoever. Take inspiration from whatever you’d like, but be transformative and creative with it. By submitting, you also agree that your piece does not infringe on any existing copyrights or trademarks, and you have full license to use it.
    5. Submissions must be self-contained (everything essential to understanding the piece is contained within the context of the piece itself—no mandatory reading outside the piece required. e.g., if you want to write two different pieces in the same setting or larger narrative, you cannot rely on information from one piece to fill in for the other—they must both give that context independently).
  3. Submission Rules

    1. One submission per participant.
    2. Submit your entry in a comment on this post.
    3. Submissions close at 12:00pm CST each Friday.
    4. You must like and leave a review on two other submissions to be eligible. Your reviews must be at least 50 words long, and must be left directly on the submission you are reviewing, not on another comment. If you’re submitting to the private post, feel free to leave these reviews on either the private or the public post. The two submissions you like need not be the same as the submissions you review.
    5. Be constructive and uplifting. These submissions are not for a professional market, and shouldn’t be treated as such. We do this, first and foremost, for the joy of the craft. Help other writers to feel like their work is valuable, and be considerate and gentle with critique when you offer it. Authors who leave particularly abrasive or disheartening remarks on this post will be disqualified from selection for readings.
    6. Use the same e-mail for your posts, reviews, and likes, or you may be rendered ineligible (you may change your username or author name between posts without problem, however).
    7. You may submit to either or both the public/private groups if you have access, but if you decide to submit to both, only the private group submission will be eligible.
    8. Understand that by submitting here, you are giving us permission to read your submission aloud live on stream and upload public, archived recordings of said stream to our social media platforms. You will always be credited, but only by the author name you supply as per these rules. No other links or attributions are guaranteed.

Comments on this post that aren’t submissions will be deleted, except for replies/reviews left on existing submissions.

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14 days ago

Set A Course For Adventure! (Chronicles of The Dragon: Scribe)
By Makokam

“Whoo! Yeah!” Scribe cheered, leaping up and bouncing on the couch as the show went to credits. She leapt from the couch and grabbed the remote. “I am-!” She stopped. She looked at the remote and frowned before tossing it aside.

She pushed aside some papers and magazines left on the table, but not finding what she wanted. She ran back and forth across the TV room, moving things and checking drawers and cabinets. Tossing aside pillows and cushions. Looking under the furniture.

She went into the hall, and almost immediately shook her head and headed for the kitchen. She first went to the knives. Pulling out a long thin one, she held it up and grinned.

And then thought. And frowned. And put the knife away.

She started going through drawer after drawer. She picked up a rolling pin and held it up, testing it, then put it back. She tried a spatula, but didn’t like the feel of it either. Eventually, she grabbed a long wooden spoon. She held it up, it swished through the air, and made her eyes light up.

She gave it a couple more good swishes before dashing back to the couch. She jumped over the back and planted her bare foot on the arm of the couch, the spoon held against her hip. With her other hand she drew her sword, with a loud hiss of wood against her cotton shorts, held it up, and proudly declared, “I am Scribe of the Bright Hair, and with the power of my Shift Shift fruit, I will find the One Piece and become Queen of the Pirates!”

“What are you yelling abou-” Nighthawk called as he and other’s walked in.


Scribe looked down at the couch turned miniature pirate ship. “Uh… hehe. Oops?” she said.

“Turn it back,” Nighthawk said, shoulders slumping, and covering his eyes with his hand. “And your TV privileges are revoked for the next week.”

14 days ago

You! You’re a Weapon Now!
By MasaCur

Nabiki finished tuning her bass as she waited for the rest of her band to arrive. They had a school concert next week, and needed to practice.

“Where’s Jacob? He’s late.”

“Dishonor! Dishonor on him! Dishonor on his cow!” Myoni declared. He played some dramatic music on his keyboard.

Nabiki glared at him. “Stop using Western references!”

“Nah. Besides, that movie is set in China.”

“It’s put out by Disney! it’s a western reference!” Nabiki gripped her bass tightly in her hands.

“Don’t have a cow, man.”

Nabiki growled and swung her bass at Myoni’s head, but he quickly ducked away. She circled around his keyboard and swung again, but the cord leading to the amp had tangled around a chair, and swinging the bass down, pulled the chair awkwardly with it, smacking into Nabiki’s back. Nabiki abandoned her weapon and chased after Myoni barehanded, the collision with the chair barely registering with her.

“You need to take a chill pill, Nabiki,” Myoni said.

Nabiki growled, gaining on him, so he circled toward the back door of the classroom.

“Hey, sorry I’m late,” Jacob said as he entered.. “I was…urk!”

Nabiki grabbed Jacob’s arm, and swung him at Myoni, lifting him off his feet. Myoni darted out of the way, vaulting over desks to get away from her.

“Nabiki, put me down! I’m not a…oof!” Air rushed out of Jacob’s lungs as Nabiki swung him overhead and down onto a desk, barely missing Myoni.

Myoni looked back and tried hard to stifle a laugh as Nabiki approached, swinging the much larger, and most unconscious, Jacob above her. It was both ridiculous and frightening to behold Nabiki’s angry tsundere girl rage as it gave her strength far greater than her small size would indicate.

“Nabiki, you need to see someone about your anger issues!” Myoni pleaded.

“I already am!” She whirled and hammer tossed Jacob straight at Myoni. Nabiki put her hands on her knees, panting heavily.

“What the heck is going on in here?” Ayase asked from the doorway.

14 days ago

Nightmarish Situations (Students of the DiamondBridge Academy universe)
by Carrie (Glaceon373)

The magical catalyst crackled with power as Nicklescribe smiled a gleaming smile. The grin didn’t fade when the door behind him crashed to the floor.

He turned. Three students glared at him. Three students he recognized.

“Ah,” he said with a tilt of his head. “So you ‘heroes’ figured it out, then? Wanted a first glimpse at my plans for the future of the Academy?”

“That’s a funny thing to say when you’re priming a BOMB,” Sam scoffed.

“Oh, this thing? I’m glad you noticed! Isn’t it just a work of art? It should take out the whole auditorium in a millisecond, you know.”

“Good thing everyone’s evacuating.” Jidz folded his arms.

“Now diffuse that bomb,” Roselyn stepped forward, “or else.”

He chuckled “Or else? Aren’t you just little comedians?”

His voice shifted.


He made the first move: absorbing all the nearby fear and warping it into a length of chain. With a lazy throw, it soared past the children, only to pivot unnaturally and ensnare the centaur’s legs.

There was a blade to Nicklescribe’s throat for all of half a second before he snapped his fingers, sending Sam flying into the wall. Another snap for Jidz, who’d shrugged off the chain.

That was two. Who was left?

A bolt of flame hit him square in the jaw.


He grabbed Roselyn by the collar, a thread of fear snatching her wand away.


Roselyn spat a fire spell into his face.


She did it again. Except it stopped midair, caught by another strand of fear. Then it twisted and warped into something much more destructive than flame.


“NO!” Sam screamed, scrambling towards Roselyn, not scrambling fast enough.

“Get him for me, Sam!” was all Roselyn could yell before the twisted fire—

Sam shot awake, hyperventilating.

“… It’s okay,” she whispered to the night. “It’s over.”

She’d done all she could have, but it never felt like enough.

15 days ago

Purpose, Simplified

By: Boople

Jack carefully picked up his new shield with deranged excitement. With his arm raised in the air, he admired how its ruby gloss caught the light from the bulb hanging in the middle of the concrete room. It had a wonderfully intricate crest that looked like porcelain, planted firmly in the center of it, the visage of a skull warped in agony with a multitude of twisting horns, wasting no free space. Jack would have loved to adore his new toy for longer, if not for the sudden spilling of vomit behind him.

“Gretel,” Jack said stiffly, taking in a sharp inhale, “Now what did I tell you about making a mess.”

He turned around to see a young woman enveloped in his shadow, splayed out in quite the exhausted manner. Gretel found her hand gripping tangled in her hair, her eyes staring blankly and shaking much like the rest of her, with lunch once again to her right. 

Jack loomed over her, disappointed.

“First you had NO table manners, so I taught you out of the goodness in my soul. Then you leave a pile of bodies to be found and tracked back to me, which I so GRACIOUSLY cleaned up for us, THANKS WOULD BE NICE BY THE WAY-,” Jack caught himself before he felt he lost composure.

Without a word he took some time to himself, ignoring the quivering mess before him.

He neatened up his hair,

He fixed up his tie,

He li-

“You’re a monste- EUGH.”

He lit up his cigar.

“And this,” Jack continued where he left off, “Is how you treat a promotion?”

“A Prom-m-otion-n, t-that’s what you call this?”

“Absolutely! I am making your life so much easier.” Jack’s words oozed with condescension

“You, -HURP-, You are sick.” Gretel spat out, catching what remained of breakfast

“No, I think you are.” Jack responded with a straight face, “but you won’t be much longer.”

Gretel could feel her bones break and melt out of shape even before Jack said the words.

“I wish I had a sword.”

15 days ago

“Fortunate Heroes” (Alinar Setting)

By: Arith_Winterfell

“Nobody really knows who started the practice,” Jadish said tapping a taloned finger against the tabletop, “just that both sides used transmutation magics and that it kept escalating.”

Nordran, the young man across the table, sat listening with rapt attention.

“At first it was just short-term transmutations, like turning a man into a beast for a short time, or perhaps buffs that enhanced strength or skill. It didn’t stop there,” Jadish paused before continuing. “Such changes didn’t last long enough for the longer grueling battles. So, the Sorcerer Lords began using transformation rituals that lasted longer. Then drew on still more magical power. Finally, they managed transformations so profound that they were not only permanent, but also passed on from one generation to the next. Of course, the results varied, these were experiments after all.”

“And that’s how they made the great war heroes!” Nordran added naively.

Jadish grimaced. “Those were the fortunate sons. Those who were stronger and faster, but still just looked like ordinary men. They were lauded as heroes when they came home. Then there were those like me,” Jadish rapped his knuckle against his horned visage. “We didn’t get to come home to welcoming parades and adulations. We were lucky to be welcomed into our own homes. Then there were those who didn’t get to come home at all.”

“Those who died you mean?” asked Nordran.

“No,” Jadish said quietly, “the one’s who ran screaming into the wilds. The ones who lost control and were chased from towns. The ones who became beast headed bandits. The man-wolves and the Orgknocks. The ones who lost their minds altogether and forgot what it was to be human at all.”

Monsters, thought Nordran. Though he was at least smart enough to not say it to Jadish’s face.

“So boy,” Jadish said with his eyes glittering goldenly, “do you still want to sign up to be a champion for the Sorcerer Lords?”

Nordran swallowed hard. If it meant escaping poverty and debt, then yes, it was worth the risk.

Wangles Bojangles
Wangles Bojangles
17 days ago

The Last Resort

By: Wangles Bojangles

The storm had settled in, brooding above the high cliffs overlooking the city. Her hands were clenched in frustration. She knew she had to choose, but the choice wasn’t fair. The giant stood off from her, an enormous silhouette looming at the tree line. The rain coming down tinked and clicked off of his dark armor. His voice was so deep it rumbled like the thunder overhead. The storm in her mind given voice.

“You know I cannot do that. If that’s what you wanted, you should have found a way to have your revenge without such cost,” he said. “But vengeance always costs something, doesn’t it.”

She ran her fingers through her soaked hair. The tears welling up stood no chance against the driving rain.

“I tried…damn it I tried so hard. I believed I could find some justice. It just…it just doesn’t stop, does it?” she asked.

The giant simply crossed his huge arms.

“Humans are creatures of spite,” he said.

She stared down at the city again.

“And when they’re all gone? What then? Will the ones who come after be any better? Would all that death really mean anything?”

“I don’t care,” he answered.

She spun, staring at him. There it was again. That impossible darkness within him. That terrifying reminder that whatever he was, even if he looked like it, couldn’t be human.

“I suppose the real choice is, can I live with it or not,” she said.

The giant nodded and she turned from him again. The tears were catching up to the storm now.

“I never want to see you again after this…but I suppose it’s better. All anyone will remember is you, the thing that brings this horror upon them. One last time, I ask of you, give me vengeance…be my sword.”

Thunder crashed overhead as he disappeared into the shadow of the woods. She looked down upon the ones she hated, one final time. She would be the last one to ever do so.

17 days ago

There Are No Strings on Me
By Marx (CW: Alex/1st Person Daisy, i.e. mental/physical abuse)

A small whimper escapes my lips as the demon hunter’s blade impales me.

It hurts…

Of course it does…

But I don’t dwell on that…

The pain will be over soon…

I’m just happy that…

…at least I was useful to Him.

My heart slows…

My breathing stops…

It’s finally over…

‘I thought I made myself clear before,’ says a familiar voice, breaking through the peace in my mind. ‘You die when I say you die.’

‘…sir?’ I feel tears falling down my cheeks having nothing to do with the gaping wound in my chest.

‘No,’ He sighs in exasperation. ‘The other voice in your head. Who else would I be?’

‘…you said–‘

‘I said you’d be a target for my escape. I never said you’d die from it.’

While true, He’d never said those exact words, they’d been HEAVILY hinted. Regardless, that wasn’t important.

‘How may I serve you, Sir?’

I hear His chuckle echo in my head. ‘Surrender to me.’


I don’t know how much more I can possibly give. I was willing to die for Him. But whatever more He wants from me is His to take.

His chuckle becomes louder. I feel myself being hurled somewhere deep in my mind. I’m forced into being nothing more than a mere observer as my healing body stands up.

His smile curls on my lips.

It takes the demon hunters a second to realize my body is moving again. That’s all the time He needs.

He makes my body do things I didn’t even know were possible. It uses magic to bend time and space, instantly appearing behind our foes.

He takes their own swords and swiftly relieves them of their heads.

The rest, he incinerates with a blast from my hand.

It isn’t a fight.

It’s a slaughter.

When only the youngest one remains, my lips smile widely as we watch him flee.

‘Why do you allow him to escape, Sir?’

“Dead men tell no tales. I want his clan to know what happened here. What merely my thrall is capable of. I want their fear.”