The small inferno belched forth huge licks of flame as he shoved the steel into the glowing coals, waiting for it to take on that white-hot sheen. Muscles burned, blisters cracked to yield their bloody contents into his palms. The liquid made its silent way along the shaft of his tool. The solid, unyielding head had been anointed with it from the beginning, lending a new strength to the emerging weapon without his knowledge.
The metal was removed for inspection. He held it close to his face, squinting at his handiwork, looking for a flaw. Finding what he sought, though apparent to none but his keen, perfectionist's eye, he lowered it to the anvil, holding it tightly in place. The hammer, hefted into position above his head, flew with brute force for the exact spot with a precision only a true master could muster. As it arched through the air towards its target, droplets of blood and sweat flew off of this extension to the man's arm. In his concentration, he'd been completely ignorant of the sting his hands had received from this mixture. He also hadn't noticed the effect it had on his creation...
The smith's hammer beat the final flaw into nothingness with one silent thought for this perfectly formed bit of steel: "The farmer who holds this scythe should reap only the sowings of the divine!"
The man fashioned his perfect blade with an equally perfect handle, painstakingly made from the trunk of the oldest tree. He stood back, regarding his handiwork in the fading light of the setting sun. A very prideful smile graced his features for a moment before exhaustion, dehydration, starvation, heat-stroke, and blood-loss took their toll. He dropped to his knees, managing to carefully place the project on the ground before him.
As his limp form sprawled, his soul became the first to inhabit the object. It was only a moment, but he would remember for the rest of eternity the glimpse of peace, the solace of darkness, and the comfort of serenity - a promise whispered by the blade. His body no longer needed breath. His wounds no longer mattered. The heart stilled, silently bound in unbreakable beats of his spirit to this, the final weapon his hammer would ever touch.
The scythe was in the hands of a true master: he, who reaps the sowings of the divine, and returns the harvest to its origins... all but one. His own soul remains in his tool until the thankless job is finished. Thus, his true name lost to the ages, the Reaper walks the realms between time, only to emerge, and show his lonely countenance to those who would look to see his face at the brink of silence.
Most cry out, holding the final delivery as a fearsome thing, imagining the messenger to be the malicious cause of the end. Few see the sadness in his fleshless visage, acknowledging him for what he's become: a tool of divinity, no will of his own, but the same ethic as in forgotten life to finish, in perfection, a job well done. Indiscriminately, as all life succumbs in whatever fashion, the Reaper waits at the end. Forever is his reward. Eternity is his gift. Peace is the ultimate promise of that inescapably, perfect blade...
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