The knife cleaved easily through the host of blueberry muffins. Even with the oven dew moist on their skin, there were no second strokes, no sawing back and forth, no tears in the crust. One quick cut after another left perfect halves of top and bottom. Steaming purple entrails glistened on the blade where it lay upon the round kitchen table.
The weathered Celtic pattern on the knife’s handle seemed to grow more distinct for a moment. But it would not be called upon to butter the muffins. One of the many knives with the Victorian Lace design would carry out this duty. It looked as dull as all the others, but its greater weight and balance were undeniable. Too many marmalade jars had shattered with a glancing blow. Too many tubs of margarine had been split asunder by a single touch. Fortunately, or perhaps for that reason, no one had dared lick Nutella from it with their naked tongue as of yet. The knife was placed carefully near a large gouge on the drain board where foolish hands had dropped it once before.
The knife was far older than the other flatware – older than anyone would guess. It did not know the names of those who wielded it before. Nor did it know the names of those whose blood it tasted. It did not even know the names of honor men had called it. But all these vibrations in time had given it a kind of self-awareness. If it did not have intelligence, then it certainly had personality. Many years ago, the knife was greater. It knew this even if it didn’t know what happened and why. The sister of a great king wanted revenge for denying her son an important post. So she stole his sword and commissioned a blacksmith to forge it into a set of tableware. The blacksmith died within a week. One cannot meddle with such forces, even in ignorance, and came away unscathed. The spoon soon perished. Its humiliation was too great. What blade that threatened to cut life away from the gods could ever be made to bear porridge? Summoning all its power the spoon lost itself behind a heavy shelf and rusted into oblivion. The fork lasted somewhat longer. It still could stab, and found some purpose in that meager task. But the mouths of those who used the fork suffered greatly. It fell into disuse and was buried in an unmarked grave by a 5 year old child playing undertaker almost 1000 years before. The knife could still slash and pierce. This was enough to satisfy its personality and proved useful to its owners when they needed to liberate a lump of burned cheese from a plate of microwaved nachos. It became less of a legend than a curiosity. Tales were told with a laugh and a “remember the time when…” as it was passed down from generation to generation.
A yellow sponge removed the bits of muffin from the knife before they could harden. After rinsing and drying, the last remaining fragment of Caledbolg, also known as Caledfwlch, Caliburn or Excaliber was cast away into a drawer, crashing into a sea of Victorian Lace.